- Sep 9, 2014
- Reaction score
Sonny Bill Williams left the Bulldogs in 2008 in an acrimonious split unlike any the code had seen before. Now, Canterbury want him back.
Sonny Bill Williams flew back into Sydney almost 12 years to the day after he walked out on the final four years of his Bulldogs deal. The ironies were many: he was landing in his home city with two contracts, and the blessing of the game’s governing body.
More than that, he is a wanted man at the Bulldogs, a club he paid $750,000 to extricate himself from in 2008.
‘‘We are not dumb money,’’ said Stu Laundy, of the Laundy family, the Bulldogs’ new naming-rights sponsor. ‘‘We want an involvement in the club. I see my dad, Arthur, having a role like Nick Politis at the Roosters — a wise man who can help with a football team that he loves.’’
Laundy has history with Politis’ new prize asset, Williams. Two years ago, he stepped into the boxing ring with SBW for charity to raise money for Reverend Bill Crews’ Exodus Foundation.
‘‘He broke my rib,’’ Laundy said. ‘‘But I got to know him and I have to say I have never met a nicer man. And there is no question he has qualities that we’d like to bring to the Bulldogs. I know he has a deal with the Roosters, but after that ... well we’d like to throw our hat into the ring for him. I’ve talked to Khoder [Nasser, Williams’ agent] and I’d like to talk with him again.
‘‘I have to admit that I’m a Roosters fan and I’m happy for Sonny, but my dad, my sisters, Danielle, Justine, and my mum, Margaret, are all Bulldogs for life and there is no question that, like them, all Bulldogs people who want to bring back a steel to the club would want Sonny Bill back.’’
Sonny Bill Williams left the Bulldogs in 2008.CREDIT:GETTY
Politis will take personally any attempt to land SBW’s signature. The Roosters supremo regards Williams as one of his great signings — if not his greatest. He made Cooper Cronk a life member after two title wins. If Williams delivers another title, Politis will have to do that and more.
Politis worked around the clock to bring SBW back and believes Williams will work for the Roosters once he finishes playing. He hasn’t left anything to chance regarding Williams’ cameo, sourcing everything from halal meat to a gym for the star’s quarantine stay.
The Bulldogs are desperate to reboot the club and know Williams would be beneficial for their culture and maybe even their on-field chances.
"I've never come across a more impressive leader and as we try and establish our culture and recapture the 'family club' feeling, Sonny would be a huge asset," Laundy said.
Meanwhile, SBW is treating his quarantine seriously.
Sonny Bill Williams arrived in Sydney on Thursday evening and headed straight for hotel quarantine.CREDIT:GETTY
He was required to sign a document to be sent to the Rugby Football League — the governing body for league in the UK — to acknowledge his twin-contract situation with the Roosters and Toronto Wolfpack. The document was delivered to Williams and he had to wear a pair of gloves when signing it. SBW and his entire family were tested for COVID-19 prior to travelling to Australia and got the all clear.
Last edited by a moderator: