Sonny Bill Williams moves to Toronto Wolfpack, signing two-year contract

We have signed one of the highest-profile rugby players if not sports stars in the world.    Wolfpack coach Brian Mcdermott

Sonny Bill Williams is on a collision course with Australia as coach Mal Meninga confirms he wants the Kangaroos to play Toronto Wolfpack at the end of 2020.

Williams won the Rugby World Cup with New Zealand in 2011 and 2015 and last played professional rugby league with the Roosters in 2014.

The former Canterbury and Sydney Roosters premiership victor has represented New Zealand in both league and union but is eligible to play for Samoa through his father's heritage.

The Canadian league outfit will next year play in the Super League for the first time after two promotions in three seasons since first playing professionally in the United Kingdom in 2017. The Super League season starts in February.

He has thanked all those fans in New Zealand and around the world who have supported him.

Toronto chairman and chief executive Bob Hunter said the acquisition of Williams can raise the profile of rugby league across the globe.

While he brought some skills from rugby league to rugby union, he lacked numerous basic attributes expected in an worldwide rugby union center.

"I'm meeting a producer from Hollywood who is flying out on Sunday from LA to meet with me, he wants to shoot the true, gritty behind the scenes of how and why we're here, the story of our road to the Super League".

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All Blacks midfielder Sonny Bill Williams has given thanks to the New Zealand rugby community and fans following the announcement that he will leave New Zealand to play overseas.

"On the field I'd like to bring high quality play and do all I can for the betterment of the team", Williams added.

"When the Kangaroos tour England in 2020, we will look forward to playing a warm-up game against the Wolfpack as it would create a lot of excitement for the sport".

The terms of the deal for Williams, who is of Samoan descent, were not disclosed but media reports said he had accepted a two-year, $10 million offer, which would make it the largest contract in the league's history. He is rugby's LeBron James and we see his recruitment as bigger than when David Beckham joined LA Galaxy.

Williams played 12 tests for the Kiwis between 2004 and 2013 after hopping codes throughout his storied career but his move to Toronto could be the final chapter.

He said: "Toronto Wolfpack has established themselves as a multi-cultural and economic powerhouse, not only in the city but across the world". New Zealand Rugby League also confirmed this week they would welcome Williams back with open arms but said his form must be strong enough to force his way back into the team.

Leicester Tigers issued a hands-off warning after Toronto were linked with Manu Tuilagi, while fellow England centre Ben Te'o is also reportedly on their radar.

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