Scrum-half Liam Davies will make his long awaited Ospreys debut against Glasgow at the Liberty Stadium on Friday night (KO 7.05pm), and he says that he will be looking to make up for lost time when he finally gets to run out in a competitive fixture for the region.
The 23-year old former Wales U21 cap arrived at the Ospreys in the summer after spending a year in France with Brive, but after featuring in the two pre-season friendlies against Leeds and Gloucester, an early season shoulder injury put his full debut on hold. Now, with injuries hitting hard in the scrum half position and Mike Phillips, Jamie Nutbrown, Rhys Webb and Tom Isaacs all on the sidelines, his turn has finally come.
Speaking ahead of his debut, Davies has said that it is important that he takes the opportunity to show what he can do:
“I picked up a shoulder injury in the early part of the season which set me back a bit and means that I haven’t had much of a chance yet. But, I’m fit again and it’s all up to me now, the coaches have given me this chance and it’s up to me to take it.
“I’m really looking forward to it, I’ve been waiting for my first game for the Ospreys since the summer and I’m just glad to finally get the chance to be honest with you. The coaches have said there’s no pressure on me, that I should basically just go out and enjoy myself. It’s been a good week in training, there’s been a real focus on getting the moves and the calls right because there’s so many boys coming into the 22. It was difficult at the start of the week but it’s come together really well, especially given the short time we’ve worked together, and we’re looking in good shape for Friday night.
“It’s going to be real test for us. They are coming down with a strong team that’s unchanged from last weekend with all their internationals available, so they are settled and will be confident after a good win. But, we’re all excited as a group of players, we want to show that we have strength in depth here, and there are players for a variety of reasons who have something to prove this weekend.”
With the Ospreys three Heineken Cup scrum halves all injured, Davies knows that he has the opportunity to play his way into contention for the December double header against Viadana, with teams able to bring one extra player into the squad during the pool stages. He said:
“I’ve been waiting on the sidelines and this is a chance for me now to prove what I can do. I was really disappointed to miss out on the Heineken Cup squad but there’s an opportunity to prove that I’m the man for the job with all the injuries that we’ve got in this position, and I’ll be delighted if I can play my way into contention for the next round of fixtures.
“I’ve played in that competition with the Scarlets, and in the Challenge Cup last year with Brive, and I want to be involved again with the Ospreys. If that’s going to happen, I have to make sure I’m on top of my game and performing well now that I’m getting a chance.”