Sonny Bill Williams will likely return to the NRL at some point before the end of his career, but if this is to be his last appearance in league, the man who so many follow has more than paid his dues to the faithful since signing with the Roosters.
It seems like only yesterday when brand SBW quickly left the Bulldogs and exited the NRL completely.
Fast forward a few years, and a Rugby World Cup win with the All Blacks as well, Williams was back in Australia and playing for the Roosters.
There was immediate uproar at how Channel Nine packaged Williams’s first game back, many called it a WWE-style promo which was just too staged when the network used Williams’s voice, taken from an interview, as a “inside the mind” style commentary while he warmed up on the sidelines and took to the field for the first time in a Roosters jersey.
But the on field performances were not controversial, capturing the NRL Premiership with the Roosters in 2013, and helping the side to one game short of the grand final the next season.
In doing so, Williams also managed to win back the hearts of the general NRL fan base, excluding the Bulldogs supporters.
Williams has said he will leave the NRL with no regrets but hasn’t ruled out a potential return to league after his rugby union stint back in New Zealand ends, presumably after two years.
It is entirely likely that the Roosters may be where Williams will end his famous career.
Bigger things are ahead for SBW for now, including the birth of his first child in the next month or so, before Super Rugby begins with the Chiefs in January’s pre season.
With his wife expected to give birth in sometime around November, it remains to be seen if Williams will make his much talked about return to the All Blacks during the end of year tour to the USA and Europe, and talk of Williams outing against the Wallabies mid October in Brisbane hasn’t been discussed in either camp Hansen or camp SBW.
While Roosters fans will no doubt be sad to see SBW leaving Australia, they should be quite confident that it probably won’t be the last time they see him in the red, blue, and white jersey.