The Ospreys along with Premiership club Neath are today mourning the tragic death of one of the true legends of Welsh rugby, Brian Williams, who aged 46 died suddenly at home last night.
He will be remembered as one of the Welsh All Black's finest ever forwards, who along with Kevin Phillips and Jeremy Pugh (latterly John Davies) formed one of the most rugged and mobile front row partnerships of the 80's. His ability in both the tight and loose play was even more remarkable because of his stature, weighing in at only 14 stone.
He was the cornerstone of a mobile Neath pack that achieved great success during the 80's and early 90"'s and in addition to his club success, he also won 5 Welsh caps.Paul Thorburn, former playing colleague and Ospreys representative said: "This has come as a complete shock to us all and our thoughts at this sad time are with his wife Gwen, his daughters and the Williams family. Words cannot explain how many of us are feeling at the moment, but I remain eternally grateful that I had the privilege of playing in the same team as someone who put his body on the line. Without a doubt Brian will go down in the history of Neath RFC as one of its hero's and he will be sorely missed by all of his friends." Mike Cuddy, Managing Director of the Ospreys and who has had a long association with Neath RFC said : "We are all deeply saddened by this news and will mourn the loss of one of the great players of his time. It was a great privilege for me to have witnessed Neath's success in the 80's and early 90's and in particular the manner in which the Neath pack destroyed most of the opposition they came across and integral to that was Brian Williams. Although he retired long before the formation of Regional rugby, Brian would have featured in any Ospreys team. His physical presence and ball carrying ability as a front row forward would feature well in the modern game and it is in many ways sad that the youngsters of today did not experience his sheer brilliance."