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Ali Williams

WILLIAMS PLAYED every Test in 2011, making a welcome return to the All Blacks after injuries disrupted his 2009 and 2010 seasons.

His experience is invaluable – he became a Super Rugby centurion last month – and his enthusiasm is undimmed.

The second Alexander Williams to play lock for the All Blacks, the 21st-century edition has all the traditional second rowers’ skills and his all-round athleticism makes him an effective lineout jumper, but it’s his attacking skills with the ball-in-hand that established the pattern for a new kind of lock for the modern era.

A consistent part of the Blues Super Rugby season, Williams slowly but surely built his form and confidence back, a testament to his dedication to his team and the jersey.

He was named in the All Blacks 2011 squad, after playing his last test in 2008.

A lock that is happy to graft away doing the more traditional tasks associated with the role, Williams' attacking skills with the ball-in-hand are also a valuable component to his game. First picked for the Blues in 2002, Williams made his debut for the All Blacks in the same year. Since then he has become an invaluable member of the Blues and the All Blacks.

Williams was one of the stand-out performers during the 2005 DHL New Zealand Lions Series, especially in the All Blacks first-up victory in challenging conditions in Christchurch, and scored two tries over the course of the Series.

As well as Williams’ traditional tight-five abilities, his attacking skills with the ball-in-hand are a valuable component of the All Blacks’ forward play, and his all-round athleticism makes him an effective lineout jumper, especially competing on the opposition’s throw.

In 2008, Ali moved to Christchurch where he joined the Crusaders in winning their seventh Super Rugby Title. It was there that Ali started locking with Brad Thorn, a combination that the All Blacks selectors recognised for the range of options the two players present.

Player
Position:
Lock
Born:
30/04/1981
Physical:
2.02m, 112kg
Test Debut:
Saturday, 9 November 2002
Test Points Breakdown:
7t
Test Points:
35
All Blacks Caps:
77
Provincial Team:
Auckland
Provincial Debut:
2001 v Taranaki
Provincial Caps:
31
Provincial Points:
20 (4t)
Super Rugby Team:
Blues
Super Rugby Debut:
2002 v Hurricanes
Super Rugby Caps:
87

Career Comments

  • •One of only two players, with Dan Carter, to play against Argentina in Buenos Aires and in all six of the All Blacks' 2006 Philips Tri Nations matches.

    • Started in all eight of the All Blacks southern hemisphere Tests in 2005 and played in 10 of the year’s Tests in all.

    • Has scored as many tries for the All Blacks as he has for Auckland and the Blues combined, in half as many matches.

    • Showed his athleticism with his first try for Auckland, scored against Otago after a 30-metre sprint, and again with his third touchdown, which capped off a sprint from beyond halfway.

    • Began playing rugby in 1998 as a lock for the Kings College Second XV. He was lock for their First XV in 1999.

    • Former Auckland age-group representative in soccer, tennis and cricket.

    • Studying for a Bachelor of Business.

Test Match record

(+) subsitute (-) replaced

2002
Nov 9 v England at London 28-31
Nov 16 v France at Paris 20-20
Nov 23 v Wales at Cardiff 43-17 (-)

2003
Jun 14 v England at Wellington 13-15
Jun 21 v Wales at Hamilton 55-3 (-)
Jun 28 v France at Christchurch 31-23 (-)
Jul 19 v South Africa at Pretoria 52-16 (-)
Jul 26 v Australia at Sydney 50-21 (-)
Aug 9 v South Africa at Dunedin 19-11
Aug 16 v Australia at Auckland 21-17
Oct 24 v Tonga at Brisbane 91-7
Nov 2 v Wales at Sydney 53-37
Nov 8 v South Africa at Melbourne 29-9
Nov 15 v Australia at Sydney 10-22 (-)
Nov 20 v France at Sydney 40-13 (-)

2004
Jul 24 v South Africa at Christchurch 23-21 (+)
Aug 7 v Australia at Sydney 18-23
Nov 13 v Italy at Rome 59-10 (+)
Nov 20 v Wales at Cardiff 26-25
Nov 27 v France at Paris 45-6 (+)

2005
Jun 10 v Fiji at Albany 91-0 (-)
Jun 25 v British & Irish Lions at Christchurch 21-3
Jul 2 v British & Irish Lions at Wellington 48-18
Jul 9 v British & Irish Lions at Auckland 38-19 (-)
Aug 7 v South Africa at Cape Town 16-22
Aug 13 v Australia at Sydney 30-13 (-)
Aug 27 v South Africa at Dunedin 31-27
Sep 3 v Australia at Auckland 34-24
Nov 12 v Ireland at Dublin 45-7
Nov 19 v England at London 23-19 (-)

2006
Jun 24 v Argentina at Buenos Aires 25-19
Jul 8 v Australia at Christchurch 32-12 (+)
Jul 22 v South Africa at Wellington 35-17
Jul 29 v Australia at Brisbane 13-9 (-)
Aug 19 v Australia at Auckland 34-27 (+)
Aug 26 v South Africa at Pretoria 45-26
Sep 2 v South Africa at Rustenberg 20-21
Nov 12 v France at Lyon 47-3
Nov 19 v France at Paris 23-11
Nov 26 v Wales at Cardiff 45-10

2007
2 Jun v France at Auckland 42-11
9 Jun v France at Wellington 61-10 (-)
8 Sept v Italy (RWC) at Marseille 76-14 (-)
15 Sept v Portugal (RWC) at Lyon 108-13 (-)
23 Sep v Scotland (RWC) at Edinburgh 40-0 (-)
7 Sept v France (RWC) at Cardiff 18-20

2008
7 June v Ireland at Wellington 21-11
14 June v England at Auckland 37-20
21 June v England at Christchurch 44-12 (-)
5 July v South Africa at Wellington 19-8
12 July v South Africa at Dunedin 28-30 (-)
26 July v Australia at Sydney 19-34
2 Aug v Australia at Auckland 39-10
17 Aug v South Africa at Capetown 19-0
3 Sept v Samoa at New Plymouth 101-14
13 Sept v Australia at Brisbane 28-24
1 Nov v Australia at Hong Kong 19-14
9 Nov v Scotland at Edinburgh 32-6 (-)
16 Nov v Ireland at Dublin 22-3
23 Nov v Wales at Cardiff 29-9
30 Nov v England at London 32-6

2011
22 July v Fiji at Dunedin 60-14
30 July v South Africa at Wellington 40-7
6 Aug v Australia at Auckland 30-14 (-)
21 Aug v South Africa at Port Elizabeth 5-18 (-)
27 Aug v Australia at Brisbane 20-25 (+)
9 Sept v Tonga (RWC) at Auckland 41-10
16 Sept v Japan (RWC) at Hamilton 83-7 (+)
24 Sep v France (RWC) at Auckland 37-17 (+)
2 Oct v Canada (RWC) at Wellington 79-15
10 Oct v Argentina (RWC) at Auckland 33-10 (+)
16 Oct v Australia (RWC) at Auckland 20-6 (+)
23 Oct v France (RWC final) at Auckland 8-7 (+)

2012
9 June v Ireland at Auckland 42-10 (+)
16 June v Ireland at Christchurch 22-19 (+)
12 Nov v Scotland at Edinburgh 51-22 (+)
18 Nov v Italy at Rome 42-10 (-)