Webb enjoys first taste of international rugby

Scrum-half Rhys Webb became the latest full Wales cap off the Ospreys production line last weekend when he made his senior bow as a second-half replacement in the win over Italy at the Millennium Stadium.

A hitherto unused member of Wales’ Six Nations squad through the opening three weekends, he got a late call to replace the injured Lloyd Williams on the bench. Although he was only on the field for 10 minutes he made a significant impact in his short spell of action, most noticeably winning a turnover that ultimately led to a late try for Alex Cuthbert.

Recalling his emotions pre-match, the 23-year old from Bridgend insisted he enjoyed every minute of his debut:

It was a shock at first and when I got the call I was lost for words. I wasn't that nervous on the morning of the game and warming up I was fine, but standing there for the anthems, it really hit me then.

"Coming on at the end is hard to get into the game; you need to get your hands on the ball, make a tackle or something like that. When I got the turnover it felt as if I had been playing for the 80 minutes.

"I enjoyed every minute of it, but it didn't last long enough. I just wanted it to go on and on."

Despite making his Ospreys bow back in 2008, it’s only over the last 12 months that Webb has truly established himself as a first team regular as a combination of injury, Wales sevens call-ups and the presence of senior scrum-halves like Justin Marshall and Mike Phillips limited his opportunities.

However, with 35 Ospreys appearances to his name since the start of 2011, the 2009 Sevens World Cup winner soared past the 50 cap mark earlier this season and now stands on 61 appearances for his home region, and he believes his international recognition is reward for both his patience and the belief shown in him by former members of the Ospreys coaching team, Scott Johnson and Sean Holley.

"I suppose this is reward for patience" he said.

"There have been a lot of good nines at the Ospreys since I have been there, Justin Marshall, Mike Phillips and now Kahn. It is just one of those things; you have got to keep working harder and harder. Scott Johnson and Sean Holley had faith in me, they gave me the chance to play and I have delivered.

"Hopefully I can stay involved in this squad now because it is a great squad to be involved in. First, we have to concentrate on the Grand Slam, then it is a case of going back to regional rugby, trying to keep up my performances for the Ospreys and then hopefully I will be lucky enough to get a call for Australia."