MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - DECEMBER 14: Zac Williams of the Blues kicks during a Carlton Blues AFL training session at Ikon Park on December 14, 2020 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Quinn Rooney/Getty Images)

GWS veteran Phil Davis has backed in Carlton recruit Zac Williams whilst revealing his past struggles with fitness.

Williams' workrate has come into question over the past few weeks as he struggles to live up to the hype that came with his move to Carlton.

Davis, a former GWS teammate of Williams, told Sportsday: “He’s not a naturally gifted aerobic athlete and "was never the pre-season specialist."

“I see all the attributes that I love in a midfielder – he’s dynamic, a great ball user and a great decision maker. It sounds like he couldn’t quite get the pre-season under his belt that he would have liked."

Williams received criticism around his form including comments  from lions great Jonathon Brown, calling the midfielder "one of the laziest footballers going around at the moment".

"That bloke has come to the Carlton footy club, paid that sort of money, he needs to turn up in better shape and get himself fit and turn up and put in a better effort, especially on defence," Brown said on Fox Footy’s On The Couch.

Davis lauded Williams as a teammate, and stated his respect for the Blues speedster.

“For me, he was one of the really great players I got to play with. I’ve got a huge amount of respect for him as a player.

Carlton v St Kilda - 2021 AFL Community Series
MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - MARCH 04: Zac Williams of the Blues looks on as Hunter Clark of the Saints lies on the ground during the 2021 AAMI Community Series match between the Carlton Blues and the St Kilda Saints at Marvel Stadium on March 4, 2021 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Michael Willson/AFL Photos via Getty Images)

“I always think it’s funny whenever someone goes from Sydney to Melbourne, the spotlight is always a bit brighter.”

Williams previously played 113 games with the Giants and signed a six-year deal reportedly worth $800,000-per-year with Carlton at the end of 2020.