Sonny Bill Williams has confirmed he will return to rugby league in Australia with the Roosters next season, 1572 days after he walked out on the Bulldogs mid-season to play rugby union in France.
Williams, who spent two seasons with Toulon before playing for the Crusaders, Chiefs and All Blacks, has signed a one-year deal with the Tricolours.
The colourful Kiwi, who is also the current New Zealand heavyweight boxing champion, has previously expressed his desire to remain in rugby to continue his burgeoning Test career with the world champion All Blacks.
But the 27-year-old has instead chosen to honour a 'long-standing' handshake deal with Roosters chairman Nick Politis and return to the NRL.
Williams is currently contracted to Japanese rugby club Panasonic Wild Knights and will join the Roosters in February.
"I'm here to announce that I've signed a one-year deal with the Roosters," Williams told a packed press conference at Easts Leagues Club.
"I've been out of the game for a long time but it's great to be back.
"I'd like to thank Nick Politis for approaching me with the deal three years ago and (Channel Nine CEO) David Gyngell (for his help).
"At the moment I'm still a rugby player and I thank the Panasonic Wild Knights for allowing me to make this announcement today."
- Sports & Recreation
- Sonny Bill Williams
- rugby league in Australia