Shane Williams says he would love to crown his rugby career by playing for a British Sevens team at the Olympic Games.
The IRB World Player of the year is currently on his second British & Irish Lions tour in South Africa and hoping to add to his Test caps in this weekend’s clash with the Springboks in Pretoria.
But the man who was crowned as the world’s best player in 2008 believes sevens rugby would be a fabulous addition to the Olympic Games. The Welsh wing wizard has joined a growing band of the world’s leading players to call for Rugby Sevens to be included in the 2016 Games.
“I believe Rugby Sevens would be the perfect fit for the Olympic Games. Sevens is exciting and fast and a game which rewards speed and agility over strength and power,” said Wales’ record try scorer.
“This enables teams from around the world, such as Kenya, Russia and Tunisia to compete at the highest level. It also provides a high level of entertainment that has proven successful in attracting new young fans to the sport from around the world.
“More than anything, sevens also embodies the Olympic ideals of camaraderie, fair play and respect on and off the field of play. These values are not immediately obvious in all sports, but in rugby, you make friends for life, whether you play or support the game at local, national or international level.
“The inclusion of sevens in the Olympic Games would be a fantastic source of inspiration for young sportsmen and women around the world.”
Rugby Union hasn’t been included in the Olympics since 1924 and is battling to regain its status. However, the IRB are looking for a return to the world’s greatest sporting stage with the small sided game, rather than 15-a-side.
Williams is currently representing the British & Irish Lions in South Africa and is excited about the prospect of there being a Team GB to play for at the Olympic Games.
“I would love to represent Great Britain at the Olympic Games – the world’s greatest sporting stage. I am sure that it is every top athlete’s dream to participate in the Games and for Rugby players it is no different,” he said.
“We would love to be there and competing for Team GB would be exciting, rubbing shoulders with elite athletes from other sports.”