We were delighted to welcome Wales and Wasps fly-half FLO WILLIAMS in to the Gilbert family recently, an extremely positive step forward for us in what is a huge year for women's rugby and sport.
Ahead of the announcement, we took some time to chat to Flo on her inspiration, experiences, what excites her for the future and why she chose Gilbert...
How did you first get introduced to the game?
I played every sport I possibly could when I was younger, but rugby was part of my social life growing up, watching the Six Nations with my family & friends, supporting Wales through the ups & downs (early 2000's was a rollercoaster for us) so this meant rugby stuck for me, being part of the local rugby club goes beyond the field, it becomes a massive part of life.
What are the benefits of playing a team sport like rugby?
Friends for life, camaraderie that cannot be generated in any other environment. Empowerment of being around like minded females. Body positivity for all types of people in a world where women are expected to look how men want them to look. Build confidence outside of your comfort zone.
What inspired you to compete at a high level in sport?
I love being competitive and this game aligned with my values of hard work, fair play & controlled aggression. I had some women I aspired to be growing up, but I had to seek them out, my more natural role models in sport were men, but that becomes more fantasy than reality.
What advice would you give parents on starting their children in sport?
Never limit their ambition and support them against all adversity. Celebrate every success. Find as many positive female role models to surround them with as possible.
What most excites you for the future of the sport?
We are in the most elite era of the sport on & off the field, the potential for expansion is almost at a tipping point where clubs are having to evolve into modern entities which will create a new era for rugby, which undoubtedly the women's game will play a big part in. I can't wait for kids to grow up being inspired by role models of all kinds in the sport.
Why did you choose Gilbert?
Gilbert have been part of my journey since I first picked up a ball (a Gilbert one..). They are deep rooted in the game have been present in rugby's journey at every major event. They hold values to grow the women's game similar to mine & I feel there is no bigger statement to make than the most traditional, quintessential rugby brand vowing to drive standards for the womens game. On the field, as a 10, quality equipment is a high priority and for me, there is no better than Gilbert match balls.
Key events coming up in 2022:
- Tik Tok Womens Six Nations
- Rugby World Cup 2022, playing in 2022 - New Zealand
- Commonwealth Games 2022 - Birmingham
- Rugby World Cup 7s - South Africa