Tomos Williams' rise to the Wales squad comes as no great surprise to Cardiff Blues according to Elite Performance Pathway Manager Richard Hodges.
The young scrum-half has been in scintillating form for his region and has been rewarded for his performances with his first professional contract and a call-up to the senior international squad for the first time, following injury to Rhys Webb.
Hodges is delighted to see Williams’ rise through the Cardiff Blues pathway, and believes his international call-up is a testament to the region’s development system.
“It’s good news for Cardiff Blues and the pathway here,” said Hodges.
“Tomos has come through from the Under 18’s into the Tier 2 of the academy and worked his way up. By now, I think he’s putting some pressure on Lloyd Williams for the first team spot here within the Cardiff Blues.
“He excelled on the HSBC Sevens Series about 12-18 months ago, playing at scrum-half there. His ability in space is what sets him apart from others, but his core skills as a number nine is as good as what’s around as well.”
Hodges, who is also a part of the Wales Under 20’s coaching team, says Williams’ promise became clear on the international age grade level, especially during last year’s Junior World Championship.
“During his two years with the Wales Under 20’s, he was one of the best players in the world at that level, especially at the Junior World Cup in his second season,” added Hodges.
“Scrum-half is a position where we have a lot of depth here in Wales, but Tomos definitely has a point of difference.”
“Defensively in training, if we ever want to work against footwork, we always use Tomos. He’s got exceptional feet, he’s very quick and one of the fittest in the squad as well.
“It’s no surprise to us here that he’s been called up, but if you are asking what’s sets him apart it’s his speed off the mark, his footwork and the individual threat he can bring to a game around the ruck.”