The /g/ sound is spelled with <g> throughout. The /w/ sound is spelled <w> or <wh> and occurs in the letter name Y.
The contrast only occurs initially and is between a velar stop and a bilabial semivowel, both voiced. It does not cause any problems.
Interesting pairs include:
The mean density value is 2.8%. The list makes 79 semantic distinctions, a loading of 53%.
Gael wail Gaels wails Gaels Wales gag wag gagged wagged gagging wagging gags wags gage wage gaged waged gages wages gaging waging gaggle waggle gaggles waggles gain Wayne gain wane gained waned gaining waning gains wanes gain wain gains wains gait wait gaits waits gaiter waiter gaiters waiters gale wail gales wails gales Wales gall wall galled walled galling walling galls walls gang whang ganged whanged gangs whangs ganging whanging gangling wangling gate wait gating waiting gated waited gates waits gate weight gates weights gated weighted gating weighting gaud ward gaud warred gauge wage gauges wages gauging waging gauged waged Gaul wall Gauls walls gauze wars gave waive gave wave gawk walk gawks walks gawp warp gawped warped gawping warping gawps warps gay way gays ways gay weigh gays weighs gear Wear gear weir gears weirs geared weird geld weld gelded welded gelding welding gelds welds get wet gets wets getting wetting ghat wart ghats warts ghee we Ghent went gig Whig gigs Whigs gig wig gigs wigs giggle wiggle giggled wiggled giggles wiggles giggling wiggling gill will gills wills gillie Willie gillies willies gilt wilt gird whirred gird word girded worded girding wording girds words girl whirl girls whirls gizzard wizard gizzards wizards go whoa go woe goes woes goad woad gobble wobble gobbled wobbled gobbles wobbles gobbler wobbler gobblers wobblers god wad gods wads gold wold goner wanner goo woo good wood goods woods goody woody goof woof goofs woofs Gordon warden gore war goring warring gores wars gored warred gored ward gosh wash got watt got what gowned wound guessed west guest west guide wide guides wides guile while guiles wiles guinea whinny guineas whinnies guise wise guise Y's gun one guns ones gun won Gurkha worker Gurkhas workers guy Y guys Y's guys wise golly Wally
Credit: John Higgins