Magners League
Young: Don't write off Williams stay
ESPNscrum Staff
February 16, 2011

Cardiff Blues boss Dai Young has thrown a lifeline to veteran flanker Martyn Williams after refusing to rule out the possibility of a contract extension.

Williams, along with long-serving centre Tom Shanklin, was expected to be shown the door by the region at the end of the season as part of a major cost-cutting exercise.

Chairman Peter Thomas described parting ways with the duo as 'the biggest, hardest, toughest, worst decision I have had to make in my 20 years with Cardiff' but Young has now added a twist in the tale for the 98-times-capped Williams.

"I wouldn't write off he's not going to be here for definite next year," Young told BBC Sport. "It has been well-documented that Martyn is not here next year. It certainly hasn't come from my mouth.

"What we have said: we have to get down to a sensible budget. [We] can't spend more than obviously we can afford and at the moment the whole squad is being reviewed.

"Players coming out of contract - Martyn and the like - are under more pressure obviously because you have got to find more money to re-sign them. But it is something we are working through over the next two to three weeks. Martyn is fully in the picture."

The Blues have been active in tying up their young stars to new deals, with Williams' successor in Wales' Six Nations squad, Sam Warburton, agreeing a new contract on Tuesday.

News of Warburton's deal was swiftly followed by a new contract for Wales wing Tom James. The 23-year old won the first of his 10 Wales caps against England at Twickenham in August 2007 and became the Blues' joint-second highest try-scorer, equal with Shanklin and one behind Jamie Robinson, when he crossed in last Friday's win over Glasgow.

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

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