New Zealand fail to lure Sonny Bill Williams back to rugby union after reports emerge he will remain with NRL side Sydney Roosters
Williams was expected to head back to Union after choosing not to go to the Rugby League World Cup but he has since changed his mind on both matters
Friday 11 October 2013
New Zealand rugby union chiefs have failed in their attempt to secure Sonny Bill Williams' services next year.
It is understood that Williams, who played for the All Blacks in their 2011 World Cup-winning campaign, will remain with Sydney-based rugby league side and recent NRL Grand Final winners the Roosters in 2014.
The New Zealand Rugby Union had hoped that Williams would play Super Rugby for the Waikato-based Chiefs as part of a three-year deal incorporating the All Blacks' 2015 World Cup defence and 2016 Rio Olympics, when sevens returns to the Games.
But 28-year-old Williams, who is part of New Zealand's squad for the forthcoming Rugby League World Cup, has rejected those overtures.
"We obviously worked pretty hard to bring Sonny home, and we have had some really good conversations with him," New Zealand Rugby general manager Neil Sorensen told http://www.allblacks.com.
"This is disappointing, but we know we put our best foot forward, and in the end Sonny has made his decision.
"As we do with many players who leave New Zealand, we will continue to keep the lines of communication open with him about his playing career."
Chiefs head coach Dave Rennie added: "While we are disappointed that Sonny won't be with us in 2014 now, we will be keen to keep talking to him about future options."
Williams initially switched to union in 2008 when he joined big-spending French club Toulon. He won 19 New Zealand caps before joining the Roosters for their 2013 campaign.
sportLiverpool 5 Norwich City 1: Uruguayan striker has now scored 11 league goals against the club
arts + entsOlivier-nominated actor and singer is set to star in Lloyd Webber's musical about the Profumo affair
filmWith more than 70 per cent of early films lost, archivists are scouring the world to preserve the precious examples that remain
sportUnder-10s football coach sacked for telling parents he was 'only interested in winning'
techA piece of new hi-tech kit aims to get us scribbling again
indybestMake getting out of the wrong side of bed on cold winter mornings a thing of the past with our selection of night-time covers
life + styleClarissa Baldwin is the brains behind the slogan 'A Dog is for Life not just for Christmas'
Arsenal 2 Hull City 0 match report: Nicklas Bendtner back in the goals as superb Arsenal march on at the top
Liverpool 5 Norwich City 1 match report: Sublime Luis Suarez tears Norwich apart once again
World Cup 2014 draw: England may suffer as Fifa moves goalposts
David Moyes admits Manchester United face tough task to retain their title
Manchester United 0 Everton 1 match report: David Moyes misery as Roberto Martinez pulls off the elusive victory
- 1 The hardwired difference between male and female brains could explain why men are 'better at map reading'
- 2 Is this the scariest advert ever? Japanese tyre commercial comes with its own disclaimer and health warning
- 3 A forgotten episode in Russian history leaves links with the Philippines
- 4 Syrian rebels consider joining forces with regime troops to fight al-Qa’ida
- 5 ‘Put it in my mouth’: Viewers outraged by apparent reference to oral sex in VIP e-cig advert