Williams keen to test himself against the best

Scott Williams: Partnership with Jamie Roberts is improving.

Scott Williams is relishing the challenge that awaits him today as he prepares to face one of the all-time greats.

It has been an important week in Williams’ rugby career, arriving in Dublin with the Wales squad after agreeing a new two-year contract at the Scarlets.

But ahead of him is a head-to-head with Ireland midfield talisman Brian O’Driscoll as Wales target an 11th victory from the last 12 RBS 6 Nations starts. Wales are also aiming to preserve an unbeaten tournament away record that has been in place for almost two years.

Looking ahead to facing O’Driscoll, Williams said: “I’ve grown up watching him. He is a world-class player and I am just really looking forward to the challenge at the weekend.

“I’ve played against him a couple of times before and it has gone all right. He’s in form, and has got every part of the game you need. He is an awesome defender and has great hands as well, so it’s going to be a bit of a challenge to defend against him.”

Centre Williams scored a try when Wales opened their campaign with a 23-15 win over Italy last weekend, but the second-half disappointed as the home side failed to build on a 14-point interval advantage.

Williams’ partnership with Jamie Roberts, though, was one of the Welsh success stories, and he has another chance today.

“Every opportunity I get, I try and give 100%. If I play well, I’m happy. I am just trying to make the most of my opportunities.

“I’ve got number 13 on my back, but in the game with Italy me and Jamie swapped quite a bit in open play and during some of our set-piece stuff. We will try to mix it up again.

“I thought Jamie was outstanding, coming back from his injuries. In my opinion, he was the man-of-the-match. He carried the ball strongly and got us over the gain line. This Saturday, I am going to just try to be on his shoulder again.”

Wales kicking coach Neil Jenkins added: “There is a calmness, but there is an edge about us as well. If you are going to win the title, you have got to take something on the road.

“If we play well, it is a game we feel we can do well in. We’ve got to back ourselves, we know it is going to be tough, but we’ve done it before.

“Our main focus is on ourselves and whatever we bring to the party. We have just got to be on edge and be ready to roll.”


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