NRL: SBW contract to be signed off by NRL - report

Sonny Bill Williams. Photo / Getty Images
Sonny Bill Williams. Photo / Getty Images

Five weeks after announcing a one year deal with the Sydney Roosters, Sonny Bill Williams' return to rugby league looks set to be made official with the NRL to sign off his contract this week, according to a media report.

Williams will finally become a registered player this week with the NRL salary cap auditor Ian Schubert agreeing to sanction his Roosters contract, the Daily Telegraph reports.

The newspaper reports that the delay in signing off the former All Black's return to league was due to the NRL wanting to include his boxing prizemoney in the club's salary cap.

However the NRL has chosen not to include the New Zealand heavyweight champion's boxing earnings in the salary cap, meaning he's free to join the Roosters.

The decision comes after the NRL failed to secure former league star Israel Folau, who decided to sign with Super 15 side the Waratahs following two seasons in Aussie rules, when salary cap restrictions meant no NRL club could afford him.

Williams underwent shoulder surgery after suffering an injury playing rugby in Japan but is confident of making the start of the NRL season. He is expected to join Roosters' training in the new year.

Before the start of the league season he will take part in his six professional fight, taking on South African boxer Francois Botha in February.

The Roosters visit Eden Park in the Warriors' first home game in round two next season.

Williams played five seasons for Sydney rival the Bulldogs between 2004 and 2008 before leaving in controversial circumstances, quitting the team for French rugby side Toulon one year into a five-year contract.

In 2010, Williams signed with the NZRU in a bid to play for the All Blacks at the following year's Rugby World Cup. The second five-eighth made his ITM Cup debut for Canterbury later that year and was selected on the All Blacks end of season tour, becoming only the second person to represent New Zealand in union after first doing so in league.

- nzherald.co.nz

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