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Shane Williams: 'Wales Is Probably The Most Fickle Nation Ever'

Shane Williams: 'Wales Is Probably The Most Fickle Nation Ever'
By PJ Browne Updated

Two Grand Slams, three Six Nations titles in all, but still Warren Gatland will never be loved by Welsh fans, Phil Bennett opined over the weekend.

Speaking to The Mail on Sunday, Bennett said it would take a World Cup win for the Welsh to step up their appreciation of Gatland from simple respect to love.

At the offices of a PR company on Monday, Shane Williams, who is an ambassador for Guinness, smiled as he was asked about Bennett's comments. He has personal experience when it comes to the capriciousness of Wales supporters.

"Look, we're probably the most fickle nation ever - I can assure you," said Williams.

"There were times when I think they'd have made me Prince of Wales after some games but then they'd have beheaded me the next week. That's that Welsh for you, really.

"We are a nation that when we won the Grand Slam everyone wanted to adopt Warren Gatland. That's how it works really. You lose a few games and then we kind of fall out of love with him and we're looking for someone else to come in. That's Wales for you."

Williams believes Gatland has become accustomed to the volatility of opinion in Wales.

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He's probably been the most successful Welsh coach, definitely within my time. He is massively respected but you've got to do an awful lot to be adopted in Wales, really, we all know that.

I think he's done enough. The majority of Welsh do love him. They definitely respect him but that's just the nature of the beat, really. I don't know many people that would have a bad word to say about Warren. Especially after everything that he's achieved within that team and the players he's nurtured through.

Obviously, he's been relatively successful with the Lions too. He's done an awful lot but it also takes an awful lot to be loved in Wales, sometimes. I think he's learned that along the way.

Picture credit: Stephen McCarthy / SPORTSFILE

Shane Williams, the Welsh record try scorer and British & Irish Lion, has teamed up with Guinness to announce plans to give Welsh fans a welcome with a difference in advance of Ireland’s NatWest Six Nations clash with Wales on Saturday, 24th February. To celebrate the camaraderie between rugby fans, Guinness has partnered with well-known Dublin pub Paddy Cullen’s to change its name to “Shane Williams” for the day as a nod to the Welsh legend and creating a new ‘Welsh’ ‘home from home’ destination for a pre-match pint. All fans will be welcome whatever their jersey! Guinness will also collaborate with the renowned Welsh Male Choir, Bechgyn bro Tafon, where they will accompany fans in the build-up to the game uniting them in song.

See Also: Explaining The Rift Between Irish Rugby And The Media

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