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Stephen Varney vs Tomos Williams: Battle of The Gloucester Rugby Nines On The Six Nations Stage

Gloucester Rugby scrum half and Italian international Stephen Varney looks to make it two consecutive wins in this years Guinness Six Nations when they face Wales on Saturday at the Principality Stadium.

A trip to the Welsh capital on Saturday will see the coming together of two future Cherry and Whites teammates when Tomos Williams lines up against his opposite number for the hosts.

Italy secured their first home win in the competition in 11 years when they defeated Scotland 31-29 in Rome with Varney scoring the third and winning try.

The 22 year-old qualifies for Italy through his mother, and made his debut for the Azzurri in 2020 when he was only 19. Following his debut he has been a regular in the Italy squad and was included in their 2023 Rugby World Cup squad.

Gloucester confirmed the signing of Williams ahead of the 2024/25 season, joining from Cardiff on a three-year contract.

Williams, 29, began this years Six Nations on the bench however has emerged as a mainstay in the starting XV. He is a two-time Six Nations winner, having won it in 2019 and 2021.

George Skivington, Gloucester Rugby’s Director of Rugby, described Williams as a “class player”, saying only France’s Antoine Dupont beating him in a lot of stats.

The fixture between the two is the fight to avoid the dreaded “wooden spoon”, which is awarded to the side that finishes bottom of the Six Nations table. A fate that Wales haven’t achieved since 2003.

Italy are also hunting for a second successive win in Cardiff, after they won 21-22 in one of the most dramatic victories in the tournaments recent history, thanks to a late Edoardo Padovani converted try.

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