Llanelli Star - - SPORT -

SHANE Wil­liams be­lieves Wales will have to side­line a pil­lar of their Six Na­tions Grand Slam to give Liam Wil­liams a li­cence to thrill in the World Cup this au­tumn.

Josh Adams was an in­flu­en­tial fig­ure in the Six Na­tions clean sweep, play­ing in all five wins and help­ing him­self to tries against Italy, Eng­land and Scot­land.

His per­for­mances put the for­mer Worces­ter War­rior, who will join Cardiff Blues for the com­ing sea­son, on the short­list for the Six Na­tions player of 2019, which was won by Wales skip­per Alun Wyn Jones.

The 24-year-old Hendy prod­uct grabbed his Six Na­tions op­por­tu­nity with both hands af­ter Sara­cens star Liam Wil­liams switched to the full­back berth with Scar­lets full-back Leigh Half­penny on the side­lines with con­cus­sion is­sues.

With Half­penny now back fit, Wales’s record try-scorer Wil­liams says coach Warren Gat­land must make a “harsh” call and bring the Scar­lets No. 15 back into the start­ing XV at the ex­pense of Adams.

And Wil­liams is adamant the move would pro­vide the plat­form for Liam Wil­liams to star on the global stage out wide.

In his col­umn for the Rugby Pa­per, Wil­liams said: “Liam Wil­liams can now rightly lay claim to be­ing one of the best play­ers in the world, but the ques­tion is whether Wales stick or twist with their Pre­mier­ship and Cham­pi­ons Cup win­ner for the World Cup.

“It will prove cru­cial to their chances of suc­cess in Ja­pan.

“He has been ab­so­lutely sen­sa­tional for Wales this sea­son. He has played pre­dom­i­nantly at full-back for the na­tional side with Leigh Half­penny on the side­lines due to con­cus­sion, but now Leigh is back fit Warren Gat­land faces an ab­so­lutely cru­cial de­ci­sion.

“Wales’s first-choice back three when ev­ery­one is fit is Leigh at full­back, with Liam and Ge­orge North on the wings.

“That’s in­cred­i­bly harsh on Josh Adams, who has been noth­ing short of sen­sa­tional since com­ing into the in­ter­na­tional set-up and was su­perb in the Six Na­tions.

“My mes­sage to Wales is to give Liam a free role for the World Cup. A li­cence to roam from the wing could see Liam tear up Ja­pan and an­nounce him­self fur­ther on the global stage.

“If Wales are to win the World Cup it is more than likely we may have to beat the best team in the world and in my opin­ion Liam holds the key.”

Josh Adams.

Liam Wil­liams.

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