The fleet-footed wing wonder was a revelation in their Sydney encounter that went down as one of the most thrilling 80 minutes in World Cup history.
His dancing-feet thrilled the crowd as they circled the mighty All Blacks while his second-half wonder try took Wales to the brink of an historical shock win.
New Zealand may have gone on to win the game but Wales - and Williams - had won rugby's heart.
Yet 'that match' came so close to not happening for Williams. At the time he was under the weather and desperately low on confidence after more than two years out of the international arena following a catalogue of injuries and lingering doubts over his size.
'Personally that game against the All Blacks was probably the most important game I had ever played for Wales. In fact, I pretty much thought that if I didn't perform that day, it would probably be my last,' said the 27-year-old. 'It was a hugely frustrating time for me. I wasn't getting picked, I had suffered quite a bit with injuries and I had missed all the previous games in the World Cup. I was asking myself a lot of questions. Was I good enough? Would I play for Wales again?
'So I was under pressure to perform and I really had a point to prove. I just wanted to get my hands on the ball and thankfully things went well for both myself and the team.
'I just thought I'd give anything a go, I had nothing to lose. I wasn't sure if I was ever going to get another chance so I just went for it, I think a few guys felt like that - and we enjoyed ourselves. It was the World Cup against the All Blacks and we were playing well.'
This Saturday will see the past catch up with Williams, who has scored 19 tries in 22 Tests, when he comes face to face with two prominent figures in his career, Graham Henry and Steve Hansen. Both coaches built him up as quickly as they cast him aside.
He said: 'I have no qualms about how things went under both Graham and Steve. I'm just looking forward to the game. The All Blacks are still arguably the best team in the world.'
Meanwhile Rhys Williams has recovered from a stomach bug to take the last place on the replacements bench ahead of Mark Taylor.