Williams ready for Leinster fight

Date published: April 15 2015

Toulon lock Ali Williams believes Sunday's semi-final with Leinster at the Stade Velodrome in Marseille will be "a battle for inches".

The former All Black, who will retire at the end of the season, expects a huge battle against the Irish province as Toulon aim to be crowned European champions for third successive year.

"Leinster have a good pack – they have that physicality and are well organised and drilled," Williams told the EPCR website.

"They are a team that likes to attack and they don't have any weaknesses really.

"They will have learned from our game in the quarter-final last year and will know more about how we play. It won't be a lot different from when we last met – it's going to be 15 people on either side fighting it out and battling to make inches."

The 33-year-old was part of the Toulon side that were crowned French and European winners last season. Toulon are at the top of the Top 14 table and are determined to be Europe champions for third successive year and repeat the double they achieved in 2014.

But Williams is focused on first getting the better of Leinster in this weekend's semi-final.

"We do believe that every time we go onto the field that we are going to win, but we know that Leinster are a good outfit – you just have to look at their results in the past to see that," he added.

"The three in a row thing in Europe hasn't come to the front of our brains. We're just doing the old rugby thing of taking one game at a time – that's for the people on the outside who don't have the ability to have an impact on the result on the field.

"It was a bonus for me coming over to Europe to play and I consider myself very lucky to be playing in a team with so many great players and characters. We all have this respect for each other and it just seems to work.

"Once you have that competitive streak in your blood you never lose it. We are a group of guys who love having fun and who love winning."