Sonny Bill Williams set to confirm next career move

Cross-code great Sonny Bill Williams looks set to quit rugby league following Toronto Wolfpack’s demise.

The Canadian club were denied re-entry into Super League for the 2021 season after they were unable to showcase a sustainable business plan to the competition’s other 11 teams.

Toronto withdrew from Super League in July this year due to overwhelming financial problems after former owner David Argyle walked away from the club.

Williams signed a jaw-dropping two-year $10m deal with the Wolfpack ahead of this season but played only five games before returning to the Sydney Roosters on loan.

Following Toronto’s rejection earlier this week, Sonny Bill is now a free agent and reports down under suggest he will quit rugby league to restart his lucrative boxing career.

Between 2009 and 2016, ‘SBW’ built up a fearsome reputation in the ring as he won all seven of his professional bouts, knocking out the likes of Gary Gurr and Ryan Hogan.

Now 35, the two-time NRL winner is being lined up for a money-spinning fight against fellow league great Paul Gallen or AFL legend Barry Hall.

Former Kangaroos captain Gallen, who is also unbeaten in nine fights, says he would be up for stepping in the ring with his old NRL rival.

Speaking on the Wide World of Sports radio station in Australia, Gallen also pointed out that a return to boxing would benefit Williams the most financially at this stage of his career.

Gallen said: “Put yourself in Sonny’s shoes: $500,000 a season, he could probably go and have three or four fights against bums and earn between $500,000-$750,000 a fight.

“He’d probably get a couple of mill for fighting me, if he ever wants to do it.

“But I think he may turn to boxing, I really do. I don’t see the money for him [in the NRL] from Sonny’s point of view.”

“From a club’s point of view, I agree; if you could pick him up for $400,000, $500,000, $600,000, the amount of money he could bring to the club, the amount of people he’s going to bring through the gate, the amount of people who are going to watch on TV because of Sonny Bill, it’s enormous.

“But from Sonny’s point of view, is it worth it?

“I don’t know if he’ll play again next year, purely because of the money.”

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