Saturday, November 03, 2012

Shane Williams in Japan - Catch up with the Welsh legend

Welsh wizard Shane Williams has been playing in Japan since hanging up his boots for club and country, relishing the challenge and change of scenery. BBC's Scrum V caught up with him recently for a fascinating look into his new life just outside Tokyo.

Williams, who played his final match for Wales last December, has taken to semi-professional rugby well and bought into the change of pace. He's playing for Japanese Division Two team Mitsubishi Dynaboars, and plays alongside former Wasps flyhalf Dave Walder, and All Black Tom Donnelly.

"Rugby is certainly a growing sport in Japan - twice the sport it was back when I toured out here. They are certainly getting better and better and it shows," Williams told Wales Online recently.

"Its attraction has grown over the years and what I have noticed is that they are very passionate about rugby, and sport in general, and have shown their commitment by bringing in big signings such as Sonny Bill Williams and Jerry Collins.

"It may not be as physical as other nations but they play at a very fast pace - 100mph rugby - and that suits my style down tot he ground.

"I am consistently learning out here. It’s a lot different to what I am used to - the training, the gym workouts, the food. These are all experiences I want to bring back to the UK and Wales. I am having to adapt every day.

"The family and I try to get out to Tokyo as much as we can, but you could spend a year in Japan and not have enough time to see half of it. Wales is a very small country and until you go and experience new places like Japan, New Zealand, South Africa, you really haven’t lived.

"It’s been a very positive experience for us so far and we are all definitely enjoying ourselves."

This 15 minute look his time in Japan gives a great insight into his everyday life so far. Enjoy.

Credit: BBC Scrum V

Posted by Rugbydump at 3:46 pm | View Comments (24)

Viewing 24 comments

Mike November 03, 2012 6:26 pm

Great to see him out there enjoying himself!

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Ottawa Rugger November 03, 2012 7:36 pm

Great vid. Glad to see the little guy enjoying himself. Also great to see a little more about Japanese rugby.

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RobertJordan November 04, 2012 1:20 am

That's awesome. Great atmosphere for retirement and raising a family.

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Eggman November 04, 2012 2:50 am

Does this mean that there'll be ANOTHER Shane Williams last game of his career?

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Pretzel November 04, 2012 2:06 pm

Hmmm something I find a little irritating was all these "last games" that SW had, and I might be wrong but I'm sure that documentary about SW we all saw perhaps earlier this year had him saying that his home town was the only town for him and blah blah blah... seems a little "fake"...

...for the record guys, I'm all for professional rugby players prolonging their careers, its what they love, heck I'm sure all our clubs have a "Veterans" team, it's just that I'd rather not hear all this "oh I always said that once my level drops then I will hang up my boots for good, I want to end on a high, I want to.....oh... go to Japan" etc....

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Jimmy November 04, 2012 2:44 pm

Shane is a once in a lifetime player for Wales, he can have as many send-off's as he wants!

In all honesty, he never billed those games up as his 'send-off's' the media did. The Aus game was his last Wales game, which for all he's done, was rightfully celebrated. The one against Glasgow was his last at home for the Ospreys, which considering their the only region he's played for was nice, and then the final of the magners against Leinster was his last professional game, which wasn't all about him, but as Shane does he stole the show and won the game.

I find it impossible how someone can criticise Shane in this video. He's had it his whole career, people doubting him. It's nice to see in this modern era a player who's putting his family first and providing a little extra comfort for them. Shane always comes across as a really down to earth, lovely guy and rugby will miss him.

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Pretzel November 04, 2012 7:11 pm

I don't personally like him, he is too cocky imo, however he has achieved a lot, and I can recognise him as a fantastic player, however, in that documentary I was sure there was things like "this is the only place for me, blah blah" I could be completely incorrect, perhaps it was someone else saying "this is the only place for shane" or "this will always be shanes home" so if I am wrong then ignore what I said, but if Shane said it himself, then seeing him in Japan is somewhat hypocritical... why retire an then go off to play in Japan, was his rugby not good enough for Ospreys? Or is he after some extra $$... either way, its up to him, and I can't blame him, I just think it's a bit sad how he'll let everyone tongue his balls in his "retirement" yet carry on playing...So in effect, he retired from Wales, not rugby...Also there was more than just 3 send off games.

Neil Jenkins was a once in a lifetime player for Wales, I can't say I am a Welsh follower, but I don't recall "send offs" left right and centre....

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Stubby November 05, 2012 8:59 am

he has the numbers to back up the cockiness. Brilliant player.
However the multiple 'retirements' are tiring.

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Jimmy November 05, 2012 12:24 pm

He did say those things yes, and to be fair to him the Amman was the only place for him to be. He lived there all his life, when he wasn't playing he'd go and watch them, and he even had a programme on S4c where he regularly went and help coach the 1st's and youth teams. But he got offered a once in a life time opportunity to go to Japan, he wanted to provide some extra money for his family to be comfortable and they get to see a different culture at first hand.

Shane still has retired from Rugby. The rugby he's playing here is semi-professional. I'm sure lots of players when they retire still play to some extent, Shane just got offered a chance to do it for money, and why shouldn't he.

I honestly think you've got the wrong end of the stick with him, he may seem cocky on the pitch, but you couldn't see a more humble guy off it. He's all about his family, never in fights, never falling out of clubs, never throwing dwarves around in NZ (dwarves are probably similar size to him!) or jumping of the back of ferrys. He's a modern pro, and a true gent.

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Pretzel November 05, 2012 8:40 pm

I probably do have the wrong end, I did come away with the feeling, after watching the documentary, that he was a humble guy who was so happy that he was able to achieve what he did..

I suppose to some extent his "cockyness" is purely mind game stuff, much like the pat on the head that Munster gave the Edinburgh 8 after driving him back over the try line. Maybe it's just the fact I'm a forward and would love to break someone as small as him, so I live my forward "feelings" through pro players, and get frustrated when no one EVER manages to smash him! lol...

I know we all say one thing then a better offer comes along, and I seriously do not begrudge the guy for going out there are making more £££ why not? He's halfway through life and he has retired... he probably can't live off his winnings forever..

Just as I said, his constant "last games" are a little tiring...

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stroudos November 04, 2012 10:14 am

12:10 - cheeky bastard!! (Presenter).

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ItalianRef November 04, 2012 11:45 am

13:12 not a try, yet surprisingly awarded by the Japanese Ref.

I would expect better from Shane Williams.. reminds me of a non-try of Caucanibuca in the French Top14 when he actually let the ball go just a few centimiters off the ground. That time the French ref did not award the try on TMO's advise.

nice ambience, very low level of rugby

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Canadian content November 04, 2012 7:38 pm

Pretzel, the hip hop world has a name for you... hater.

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Pretzel November 04, 2012 10:43 pm

"Tru dat"... I'm not a Shane Williams hater, the guy has some serious skills, I just dislike the "stuff" that surrounds him, either from him, or from his fans... for instance that time where he jumped over a tackle, I saw it as "rugby player jumps over other rugby player = penalty" so many "non haters" looked at it and saw "Shane Williams jumps over other rugby player = pat him on the back and say well done because it's Shane Williams".. No doubt it was a fantastic show of athleticism outside of the rugby world, however SBW is a boxer outside of the rugby world, should we let him throw his fists around and accept it because "it's an amazing display of athleticism"...

...SW would still probably get a place in my "World XV" if I thought about it...or at least my Northern Hemisphere World XV. But it still doesn't stop me from wanting to see someone smash him whenever he picks up the ball and does that "where is everyone, hand shielding the sun from his eyes, gesture"...

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karmamoths November 07, 2012 11:49 pm

Pretzel. C`mon don`t be sour. If you as a pro come to the end of your career, are you seriously saying you would not turn down an opportunity to play semi-pro for a year or two to help secure your young families future and provide an experience of a different culture etc at the same time? To turn down such an experience and help to provide so much culture, experience and financial gains to yourself, your wife and Children, would be no less than a disservice to them and you. He has retired from international Rugby, The Celtic (Pro League) and gone to play for enjoyment and they offer him serious cash to do it. Good luck to him. Jealousy is a terrible thing. If I had half the chance, I`d be off like a shot...! Lets be honest.

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Pretzel November 08, 2012 10:56 pm

Honesty is fine, I am all for it, I don't blame him for taking the chance at all... why not, its a chance to do what he is good at, AND get paid for it, in more of a "relaxed" fashion...

However I just find it a little cringeworthy when everyone, (as I said before) appeared to tongue his balls about how loyal and perfect and amazing SW is and how he was born, lived, and will die in some little Welsh village, and now it's "off to Japan" and everyone is saying, yeh go on boy, see you when we see you... this is perhaps why I like to leave some of these interviews out of my rugby life, I just find it all so hypocritical... Of course who knows he might do this for a few years and scream back to Wales to his village...

And also the stuff I said before about one rule for him and one rule for others...

But of course, I do with the guy well.. I just hope we don't have another 2-3 final, "goodbye shane" videos....

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Canadian content November 04, 2012 7:39 pm

Btw, I always find it interesting to see these players who we put on such a playing pedestal, be handled relatively easily in the tackle. You'd expect him to break everyone and score every time he touched the ball, which is so far from the case.

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Stubby November 05, 2012 9:00 am

They sure handled him nicely during the world cup!

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Brennie November 05, 2012 12:34 am

Great vid ...Japanese rugby's the biz!

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kadova November 05, 2012 12:47 am

Dave Walder: "It's like landing on the moon" lol ! Though i can imagine that.

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Jeroo November 05, 2012 3:17 pm

Walder serving popcorn on match day!? Wow! He must be on some serious money out there! Good for him.

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Ninja November 06, 2012 1:29 am

Such a gent , delighted he is getting on well

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vaiz November 06, 2012 6:53 am

Shane Williams is a superstar in all of Samoa. Such a nice talent and a nice guy

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Wayno December 21, 2012 8:43 pm

I dont understand how these Japanese clubs can afford these massive superstar contracts..where does the money come from?'s definitely not from the gate it looked like there were only a couple of hundred people at that game

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