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Nick Williams issues update after suffering cardiac arrest at 38

By Ian Cameron
Nick Williams has announced his retirement. (Photo by Dan Mullan/Getty Images)

Former Cardiff Blues and Auckland Blues No.8 Nick Williams has thanked well-wishers after he suffered a cardiac arrest in recent weeks at the age of 38.


The 6’3, 130kg loose forward, who lives in Barry in Wales, retired from the game in 2020 after four seasons at the then Cardiff Blues.

The former Ulster, Aironi and Munster player said he was ‘extremely grateful’ to his family after what has been a ‘tough’ few weeks.

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“Talofa lava everyone. I’m extremely grateful to the big man upstairs for getting myself and my family through a tough few weeks,” he wrotes on Instagram. “I can’t thank you all enough for the love, thoughts and prayers. I haven’t been able to get back to you all but please know that I’m truly thankful from the bottom of my heart,” he wrote on his Instagram page.

“To my superhero Jase, the Welsh Air Ambulance and the entire staff at the NHS my sincerest thanks and love to you all. Diolch yn fawr iawn.

“Finally to my brothers, my sisters, mum and of course my beautiful wife Gemma and our three girls, your strength and love is my drive to get stronger day by day. From now it’s all about rest and recovery. Health is wealth.”

Williams joined Cardiff Blues from Ulster in 2016, and previously enjoyed stints with Aironi and Munster after starting his career in New Zealand with the Blues and North Harbour.


During his time in Cardiff, Williams made 77 appearances, scored 13 tries and played an inspirational role in the 2018 European Challenge Cup success.

Williams, who was born in Auckland but of Samoan descent, played rugby league through his youth and switched to union late. He was taken under the wing of Mark Anscombe and quickly progressed to North Harbour and Blues honours.

A larger than life character on and off the pitch, Williams played 37 Super Rugby games for the Blues and earned four Junior All Blacks caps before making the move to Europe.



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