Williams: Force quintet's Wallabies selection shows what we're building

Fri, Jun 21, 2024, 6:56 AM
by Ben Somerford
Western Force captain Jeremy Williams spoke to media in Sydney following his maiden Wallabies selection.

Jeremy Williams says having five Western Force players called into Joe Schmidt’s maiden Wallabies squad is a sign of the work within the programme over the past few years.

Force captain Williams, 23, was joined by Kurtley Beale, Ben Donaldson, Hamish Stewart and Nic White in earning call-ups for the Australia camp ahead of Tests against Wales and Georgia next month.

The Force may have missed the Super Rugby finals, but Williams said the selections were recognition of the emerging programme.

“It’s awesome to see a number of Force players in there,” Williams told reporters in Sydney.

“It probably just goes to show the building that we’ve done in the last couple of years. I see that just growing ever more.”

For Williams, it was his maiden Australia call-up, which he enjoyed alongside his mum having spent the past fortnight in his native Sydney training with the wider Wallabies training squad.

“I was sitting at home with my mum this morning and got the call from Thommo (Wallabies team manager Chris Thomson),” Williams said.

“Yeah, I was super excited, super pumped. My mum was jumping around at home, so I had to tell her to calm down a little bit while I was on the phone. Super exciting.”

Williams’ maiden call-up comes less than six months after being named Force skipper, having moved to Perth from the NSW Waratahs ahead of the 2023 Super Rugby Pacific season.

Since the switch west, Williams has played 24 times for the Force, emerging as a key lineout option and a versatile on-ball threat.

“It’s been pretty cool,” Williams said about his journey so far.

“Going over to the west, I’ve loved every minute of it. We’ve got a great coaching staff over there and a great bunch of men. I’ve really enjoyed my time over there.”

Williams has mostly played at lock for the Force but was used in the back row at six late in the season.

When asked about his likely Wallabies position under Schmidt, he said: “I’m not too sure. Either or.

“I’ll be stoked just to make my debut and get out there.”

Wallabies 2024 Home Tests

July Tests

Wallabies v Wales, 5:45pm AWST, Saturday July 6 at Allianz Stadium, Sydney

Wallabies v Wales, 5:45pm AWST, Saturday July 13 at AAMI Park, Melbourne

Wallabies v Georgia, 1:45pm AWST, Saturday July 20 at Allianz Stadium, Sydney

The Rugby Championship/Bledisloe Cup

Wallabies v South Africa, 12:30pm AWST, Saturday August 10 at Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane

Wallabies v South Africa, 5:45pm AWST, Saturday August 17 at Optus Stadium, Perth

Wallabies v New Zealand, 1:45pm AWST, Saturday September 21 at Accor Stadium, Sydney

Tickets to the Wallabies 2024 Home Tests are available to purchase here.

Get tickets to the Rugby Championship Long Lunch to be held on Friday 16 August prior to the Wallabies-Springboks Test in Perth, with Wallabies coach Joe Schmidt and RA CEO Phil Waugh among the guest speakers. More info & tickets here.