Former Ospreys scrum-half Andy Williams has been appointed Player Development Officer for the Swansea District.
The 30-year old from Waunarlwydd, one of the Ospreys ‘originals’ from the first ever season of regional rugby in 2003/04, has taken the post after deciding to hang up his boots following a season where he helped Worcester Warriors win promotion back to the Aviva Premiership at the first attempt.
Williams began his professional career with Bath, before a move to the Ospreys in 2003 which saw him represent his home region on 34 occasions, scoring three tries, with his debut coming in the first ever competitive Ospreys match, a 41-30 win over Ulster at the Gnoll.
He left the Ospreys to return to Bath midway through the following season, staying at the Recreation Ground until 2007 when he returned to Wales to play for Newport Gwent Dragons. Short spells at Moseley and Gloucester followed, before he joined Worcester last season, where he made 17 appearances in their successful promotion campaign.
Williams was capped five times by Wales, his first coming in the 2003 friendly against Romania in Wrexham and his final appearance in the red shirt coming four years later in Australia.
The move to the Community Development team at the Ospreys is one that Williams says he’s really excited about, hence his decision to call time on his playing career:
“I’ve been a professional rugby player now for 12 years, and this is the logical next step for me in my career” he said.
“Over the last couple of years I’ve been completing a Sports Management degree at Swansea Metropolitan Univesity, this is the next chapter in my life and I’m really excited about. I’ve made a conscious decision to hang up my boots, in anything I do I want to give 100 per cent and if I’m making this career switch that’s what I aim to do, give 100 per cent to the job.
“Being a rugby player has allowed me to do so many great things. I’ve played for Wales, played in the European Challenge Cup Final and a Heineken Cup semi and quarter, but this is a new challenge. Before I turned professional I always wanted to work with kids, to help develop rugby players, and what better place to do it than with my home region?”
Regional Community Manager, Ben Rose, welcomed Williams to the team, saying:
“The appointment of Andy is a very positive move for the Ospreys, and for rugby development in the Swansea District. As someone who has played at the very highest level of rugby, and who has a real passion for development, he will be a real asset to the Community set-up here, and can be a real role model for the children he works with on behalf of the Ospreys.”