World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Sonny Bill Williams

Article Id: WHEBN0002725599
Reproduction Date:

Title: Sonny Bill Williams  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: 2011 Rugby World Cup Pool A, 2011 Super Rugby season, 2012 Rugby Championship, Ma'a Nonu, Aaron Cruden
Collection: 1985 Births, Barbarian F.C. Players, Canterbury Rugby Union Players, Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs Players, Chiefs (Rugby Union) Players, Converts to Islam, Counties Manukau Steelers Players, Crusaders (Rugby Union) Players, Dual-Code Rugby Internationals, Expatriate Rugby League Players in Australia, Expatriate Rugby Union Players in France, Heavyweight Boxers, Junior Kiwis Players, Living People, Male Boxers, Marist Saints Players, New Zealand Boxers, New Zealand Expatriate Rugby League Players, New Zealand Expatriate Rugby Union Players, New Zealand Expatriate Sportspeople in Australia, New Zealand Expatriates in France, New Zealand Expatriates in Japan, New Zealand International Rugby Union Players, New Zealand Muslims, New Zealand National Rugby League Team Players, New Zealand People of Australian Descent, New Zealand People of English Descent, New Zealand People of Irish Descent, New Zealand People of Samoan Descent, New Zealand People of Scottish Descent, New Zealand Rugby League Players, New Zealand Rugby Union Players, Panasonic Wild Knights Players, People Educated at Mount Albert Grammar School, RC Toulonnais Players, Rugby League Centres, Rugby League Five-Eighths, Rugby League Locks, Rugby League Second-Rows, Rugby Union Centres, Rugby Union Wings, Sportspeople from Auckland, Super Rugby Players, Sydney Roosters Players
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Sonny Bill Williams

Sonny Bill Williams
Williams in Samoa, August 2014
Personal information
Full name Sonny William Williams[1][2]
Nickname SBW
Born (1985-08-03) 3 August 1985
Auckland, Auckland Region, New Zealand
Height 194 cm (6 ft 4 in)[3][4]
Weight 108 kg (238 lb; 17 st 0 lb)[5]
Playing information
Rugby league
Position Second-row, Five-eighth, Lock
Years Team Pld T G FG P
2004–08 Bulldogs 73 31 0 0 124
2013–14 Sydney Roosters 45 11 0 0 44
Total 118 42 0 0 168
Years Team Pld T G FG P
2004–13 New Zealand 12 5 0 0 20
Rugby union
Position Centre, Wing
Years Team Pld T G FG P
2008–10 Toulon 33 6 0 0 30
2010 Canterbury 6 4 0 0 20
2011 Crusaders 15 5 0 0 25
2012 Chiefs 18 5 0 0 25
2012–13 Panasonic 7 2 0 0 10
2014 Counties Manukau 2 0 0 0 0
2015 Chiefs 10 1 0 0 5
Total 91 23 0 0 115
Years Team Pld T G FG P
2010–15 New Zealand 33 9 0 0 45
As of 31 October 2015

Sonny William "Sonny Bill" Williams (born 3 August 1985) is a New Zealand rugby player and heavyweight boxer who has played rugby league and rugby union at the highest levels. He currently plays rugby union for the Chiefs in Super Rugby. He is only the second person to represent New Zealand in rugby union after first playing for the country in rugby league. He is particularly known in both codes for his ability to offload the ball in the tackle and, formerly in rugby league, for his shoulder charges.[6][7][8]

Williams made his professional rugby league debut for the Canterbury Bulldogs during the 2004 National Rugby League (NRL) season. In 2008 he left the Bulldogs mid-season to play rugby union with French club Toulon. In 2010 Williams signed with the New Zealand Rugby Union in a successful bid to play for the All Blacks at the 2011 Rugby World Cup. He played provincially for Canterbury in the 2010 ITM Cup before being selected for the All Blacks' 2010 end of year tour, where he made his test debut against England on 6 November. In Super Rugby he played for the Crusaders in 2011 and the Chiefs in 2012. Following that, he played briefly for Panasonic in the Japanese Top League before returning to rugby league after signing with the Sydney Roosters for the 2013 NRL season. That year he was judged the world's best rugby league player at the annual RLIF Awards. After playing another season for the Roosters in 2014, Williams returned to New Zealand rugby with Counties Manukau in the 2014 ITM Cup, followed by the Chiefs in 2015. He claimed a second Rugby World Cup title in 2015.

From 2009 to 2013, Williams boxed professionally six times, winning all six of his heavyweight bouts before suspending his boxing career to focus on rugby football. Subsequently, he resurrected his boxing career in early 2015. He was formerly the New Zealand Professional Boxing Association (NZPBA) Heavyweight Champion and World Boxing Association (WBA) International Heavyweight Champion and is currently ranked inside the top 100 heavyweight boxers in the world with boxing website BoxRec.


  • Early life 1
  • Rugby league 2
    • 2004–08: Bulldogs 2.1
    • 2013–14: Roosters 2.2
  • Rugby union 3
    • 2008–10: Toulon 3.1
    • 2010: Canterbury 3.2
    • 2011: Crusaders 3.3
    • 2012: Chiefs 3.4
    • 2012–13: Panasonic 3.5
    • 2014: Counties 3.6
    • 2015: Chiefs 3.7
  • Boxing 4
    • Williams vs Lewis 4.1
    • Williams vs Liava'a 4.2
    • Williams vs Tillman 4.3
    • Williams vs Botha 4.4
    • Williams vs Welliver 4.5
  • Endorsements 5
  • Personal life 6
  • Statistics 7
    • NRL 7.1
    • All Blacks 7.2
    • Professional boxing 7.3
  • Honours 8
    • Individual 8.1
    • Team 8.2
  • See also 9
  • References 10
  • Further reading 11
  • External links 12

Early life

Williams was born on 3 August 1985, in Auckland, New Zealand, the son of John and Lee (née Woolsey).[9][10] His father is Samoan and was raised in New Zealand. His mother is of European New Zealander lineage, including English, Scottish and Irish descent.[11] His maternal grandmother is Australian, which made Williams eligible to play for the Australian national rugby league team.[9][12][13] He has an older brother, John Arthur, and younger twin sisters, Niall and Denise.[14][15]

Williams grew up in a working-class family in a state house in the Auckland suburb of Mount Albert.[15] In describing his struggling family background, Williams later said that the "driving factor" in his pursuit of playing professional rugby league was to "get my mum a house."[16] He attended Owairaka Primary School,[17] Wesley Intermediate and Mount Albert Grammar School. As a child he has been described as being a "small, skinny white kid"[18] who was "painfully shy", as well as "a freakish sporting talent, a competitive sprinter, a champion high jumper and cross country runner and the kid who played footy in teams a couple of age divisions above, to make things fairer."[15] Despite being tipped to have a promising future in athletics, Williams abandoned it when he was about twelve years old.[14] Though his father was an accomplished rugby league player, Williams has said it was his mother who introduced him to the game.[9]

Rugby league

Williams was a Marist Saints junior when he was spotted playing in Auckland by Bulldogs talent scout John Ackland.[19] In 2002 he was offered a contract and moved to Sydney (as the youngest player to ever sign with an NRL club) to play in the Bulldogs' junior grades.[20][21][22] While training professionally, Williams worked full-time as a labourer.[23] He advanced up the ranks quickly: becoming a starting player in the forward pack for the Bulldogs' Jersey Flegg Cup side in his first year. The following year Williams cemented a starting spot in the Premier League side. He also represented NSW as a junior; however, in 2013, when the NSW team investigated whether he could represent them in State of Origin, it was found that he only met two of the five necessary qualifications.[24]

2004–08: Bulldogs

In 2004, when eighteen years old, Williams made his NRL debut for the Bulldogs against the Parramatta Eels at Telstra Stadium. In 2004 he was selected by New Zealand after only a handful of NRL games and on 23 April made his debut for the Kiwis as their youngest-ever Test player in the 2004 ANZAC Test against Australia.[20] He had previously played for the Junior Kiwis.[14] Williams played fifteen NRL matches during the season—establishing himself in the Bulldogs squad. He experienced premiership success in his debut season and became the youngest person to play for the Bulldogs in a grand final when playing off the bench in the Bulldogs' 16–13 victory over the Sydney Roosters in the 2004 NRL Grand Final.[20] Williams capped a successful debut season by receiving the 2004 RLIF Awards' International Newcomer of the Year Award and being named in Rugby League World magazine's 2004 World XIII.[25] As 2004 NRL premiers, the Bulldogs faced Super League IX champions, the Leeds Rhinos, in the 2005 World Club Challenge, which the Bulldogs lost 32–39.

Williams's contract was due to expire in 2005, and he received several offers to lure him away from the Bulldogs. The largest offer was rumoured to be about $3 million from UK Super League club St Helens.[26] Williams decided to stay with the Bulldogs and signed on for a further two years. St Helens chairman Eamonn McManus later said the club had not made an offer to him.[27]

Williams had a shortened 2005 season after sustaining a severe knee injury and several minor injuries. He played five games throughout the year and subsequently missed several internationals for New Zealand. Williams expressed his frustration, stating "You've got to be pretty strong mentally when you have injuries, and I've had a few."[28] Williams later dismissed claims he was injury prone as "bullshit".[29]

Williams stayed relatively injury-free throughout the 2006 season, playing in 21 matches and scoring eight tries. The Bulldogs were beaten in the preliminary final by eventual premiers the Brisbane Broncos. However, off-season surgery forced Williams to miss the Tri-Nations for New Zealand for the second consecutive year.[30]

In the first game of the 2007 season, Williams was sent off and subsequently suspended for two weeks for a high tackle on Andrew Johns. He thus became the first player of the 21st century to be sent off in a first-round game.[31] Speculation surrounding Williams's playing future ended when he re-signed with the Bulldogs on 9 March 2007 for a five-year contract worth over $2.5 million, extending through to the 2012 season.[32] Williams was selected to play for the Kiwis as a second-row forward in the 2007 Anzac Test loss against Australia.[33] He went on to play in 21 matches for the Bulldogs; scored fourteen tries and topped the competition, for the second successive year, for most offloads.[34] However, Williams broke his forearm in a tackle on Nathan Hindmarsh during the semi-final against the Eels. His team lost the match, and Williams was again ruled out from representing New Zealand in the post-season 2007 Great Britain Tour. He was nominated for 'Second-Rower of the Year' at the 2007 Dally M Awards; however, Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles second-rower Anthony Watmough won the award.

2013–14: Roosters

On 13 November 2012, Williams confirmed he would be returning to rugby league after signing a one-year deal with the Sydney Roosters for the 2013 NRL season.[35] His return was undertaken to honour a handshake agreement with Roosters chairman Nick Politis.[36] It took over a month before his contract was officially approved and registered by the ARLC; he was "frogmarched into League Central to be grilled as part of the probe" into his contract.[37][38] Williams's return coincided with the banning of the shoulder charge—a manoeuvre of which he has been described as the best and most famous exponent.[39][40][41][42]

On 7 March, Williams made his debut for the Roosters before a record first round crowd and television audience;[43] he also scored his first try for his new club.[44] On 1 April, Williams scored his second try in the Roosters' 50–0 win over the Eels—their biggest ever victory against Parramatta and the first time they had kept their opposition scoreless in consecutive matches since 1999.[45] On 12 April he scored twice in his first encounter against the Bulldogs—with the 38–0 result being the Roosters' largest ever victory over Canterbury.[46] On 5 May he scored his fifth try against the Panthers.[47] On 16 June, Williams scored his sixth try against the Warriors.[48] On 28 July, Williams scored his seventh try against Newcastle, but he was given a two match suspension for a grade three careless high tackle on former Bulldogs teammate Willie Mason.[49][50] On 19 August, after returning from suspension, Williams scored his eighth try against the Wests Tigers.[51] On 6 September he was named man-of-the-match as the Roosters claimed the NRL minor premiership and J. J. Giltinan Shield against the Rabbitohs in front of a record NRL regular season crowd of 59,708.[52][53] On 6 October, Williams played in the grand final against Manly, with the Roosters claiming the premiership 26–18. Williams later said of the victory "I didn't cry, but it was the first time I've come close to crying."[54] Subsequently, he was awarded the Jack Gibson Medal as the Roosters' player of the year.[55][56] Several days later he announced that he would continue playing for the Roosters into 2014[57]—the first time he had played consecutive seasons for one team since leaving Toulon in 2010.[58]

Williams during the 2013 Rugby League World Cup.

Following the NRL season, Williams announced himself unavailable for international selection. As a result, New Zealand named a 24-man squad without him; however, after reversing his self-exclusion he was added to the squad at the expense of Tohu Harris.[59] On 27 October, Williams played in his first Test game in over five years—and his first victory for the Kiwis—while playing against Samoa.[60][61] In his second game of the tournament, Williams scored three tries against Papua New Guinea, in a man-of-the-match performance.[62] In the week leading up to the final, Williams was awarded the Rugby League International Federation's 'International Player of the Year' award for 2013; he cried when his teammates performed an impromptu haka for him at the award ceremony.[63][64] He went on to play in the World Cup final, where New Zealand were defeated by Australia.

On 6 March 2014, Williams and the Roosters began the

  • Sonny Bill Williams at
  • Sonny Bill Williams's NRL playing statistics
  • Sonny's runner – essay on Williams's 2008 mid-season move, by Sean Fagan
  • League's most hated player? by Daniel Ramus
  • Profile on
  • Professional boxing record for Sonny Bill Williams from BoxRec

External links

  • Matheson, John (2011). Sonny Bill Williams: The Story of Rugby's New Superstar.  
  • Riley, David (2013). Off Loading with Sonny Bill Williams.  

Further reading

  1. ^ Kent, Paul (6 August 2008). "Sonny's Signature is Worthless". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 9 May 2013. 
  2. ^ Derriman, Philip (22 April 2006). "TV outrages that are trite, tedious or a tad annoying". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 9 May 2013. 
  3. ^ "Sonny Bill Williams".  
  4. ^ Robbie Deans nonplussed about Sonny Bill, NZPA, dated 20 October 2010.
  5. ^ Sonny Bill Williams,
  6. ^ Sonny Bill Williams sinbinned for shoulder charge on debut, by David Murray, The Daily Telegraph, 9 August2008.
  7. ^ SBW told to put shoulder charge away, 20 October 2011
  8. ^ Hewett, Chris (28 March 2011). "Williams and Carter produce a Super show for Twickenham". The Independent (London). 
  9. ^ a b c "Sonny Bill is still a mum's boy at heart". Fairfax. 11 May 2008. Retrieved 17 October 2010. 
  10. ^ 48 hours: Sonny Bill – the future and a reminder of league's follies, by Chris Rattue,
  11. ^ Fresh TV (13 Apr 2012). "FRESH: My World - Sonny Bill Williams". YouTube. Retrieved 2 November 2015. 
  12. ^ "Sonny Bill Williams, the contender".  
  13. ^ "Family values driving Sonny Bill to his date with destiny".  
  14. ^ a b c Early hints of Sonny Bill's charisma, by Steve Deane,, dated 16 March 2013.
  15. ^ a b c d e Sonny Bill Williams, the contender, by Greg Bearup, The Australian, dated 2 March 2013.
  16. ^ a b Sonny Bill Williams: 'All those troubles made me the man I am today', by Donald McRae, The Guardian, dated 29 October 2013.
  17. ^ Wilson, Andy (6 November 2004). "All eyes trained on Kiwis' boy wonder". Guardian (UK: Guardian News and Media). Retrieved 17 October 2010. 
  18. ^ There's something about: Sonny Bill Williams, league player,, dated 26 October 2013.
  19. ^ Rattue, Chris (2 September 2006). "Jerome Ropati – Miracle in the making". New Zealand Herald (APN Holdings). Retrieved 10 October 2010. 
  20. ^ a b c "The King, Sonny and heir". Sydney Morning Herald (Fairfax). 2 October 2004. Retrieved 12 November 2011. 
  21. ^ Sonny Bill Williams: Islam brings me happiness, by Gary Morley and Neil Curry, CNN, dated 27 November 2013.
  22. ^ Honeysett, Stuart (31 July 2008). "Sonny Bill Williams upgrades to penthouse". Australian (News). Retrieved 12 November 2011. 
  23. ^ Rugby League World Cup 2013: Sonny Bill Williams eyes greatness, by Ben Dirs, BBC Sport, dated 22 November 2013.
  24. ^ Daniel Lane (30 May 2015). "Cooper Cronk's former running mate can't help Blues get his number". Brisbane Times. Retrieved 31 May 2015. 
  25. ^ a b Gordos (16 February 2005). "Williams has world at his feet". BBC Sport. Retrieved 12 November 2011. 
  26. ^ Walter, Brad (10 March 2005). "What Sonny Bill is worth". Sydney Morning Herald (Fairfax). Retrieved 27 January 2011. 
  27. ^ Walshaw, Nick (11 August 2008). "Sonny Bill Williams' slant on the truth". Courier Mail. News. Retrieved 3 September 2011. 
  28. ^ "Sonny Bill slips back under the radar". Sydney Morning Herald (Fairfax). 12 November 2006. 
  29. ^ Webster, Andrew (18 September 2007). "Bill brushes off brittleness bunkum". Sydney Morning Herald. Fairfax. Retrieved 29 February 2012. 
  30. ^ "New Zealand names five newcomers for Tri-Nations". AFP. 5 October 2006. Retrieved 19 July 2015. 
  31. ^ "Sharks v Dragons preview". NRL. 17 March 2011. 
  32. ^ "I want to be a Bulldog for life". Sydney Morning Herald. Fairfax. 9 March 2007. 
  33. ^ "Anzac Test match 2007". Shawn Dollin, Andrew Ferguson and Bill Bates. Retrieved 1 September 2013. 
  34. ^ Roosters v Rabbitohs preview, by Ben Blaschke,, dated 5 March 2013.
  35. ^ Sonny Bill stops short on Bulldogs apology, by Ian McCullough, AAP, dated 13 November 2012.
  36. ^ a b Rooster or Chief? Sonny Bill Williams will keep 'em guessing, by Brad Walter,, dated 30 September 2013.
  37. ^ Sydney Roosters favourites to hold onto Sonny Bill Williams when he decides on his future, by Josh Massoud, The Daily Telegraph, dated 13 August 2013.
  38. ^ Sonny Bill Williams signed, sealed, delivered as ARLC finally approves contract with the Roosters, AAP, dated 21 December 2012.
  39. ^ Shoulder charge ban urged, by Adrian Proszenko,, dated 8 April 2012.
  40. ^ NRL rule change gets cold shoulder from players, by Sam Worthington,, dated 22 November 2012.
  41. ^ Players up in arms as ARLC outlaws the shoulder charge, by Brad Walter, The Irrigator, dated 21 November 2012.
  42. ^ NRL referees boss Daniel Anderson says referees got shoulder charge interpretaion right in All Stars, by Chris Garry and Josh Massoud, The Courier-Mail, dated 12 February 2013.
  43. ^ Round 1 Breaks NRL TV and Crowd Records,, dated 8 March 2013.
  44. ^ A disappointing debut in defeat, but SBW knows it's onwards and upwards from here, by Brad Walter,, dated 8 March 2013.
  45. ^ Sydney Roosters hammer pathetic Parramatta Eels 50–0, by Dean Ritchie, The Daily Telegraph, dated 2 April 2013.
  46. ^ Bad to worse as SBW's Roosters make it a dog day, by Glenn Jackson,, dated 12 April 2013.
  47. ^ Jennings fires against former club, The Daily Telegraph, dated 5 May 2013.
  48. ^ Shock loss fails to take gloss off Sonny Bill's freak talent, by Brad Walter,, dated 16 June 2013.
  49. ^ Robinson: Sonny Bill will be fine, by Mark Hughes, Sportal, dated 29 July 2013.
  50. ^ Sydney Rooster Sonny Bill Williams cops two-game suspension for hit on Willie Mason, by Barry Toohey, The Daily Telegraph, dated 30 July 2013.
  51. ^ Sonny Bill Williams puts on another stellar performance as Sydney Roosters destroy Wests Tigers, by Nick Walshaw, The Daily Telegraph, 20 August 2013.
  52. ^ Pearce, Maloney deliver for Roosters, by Adrian Warren, NZ Newswire, dated 7 September 2013.
  53. ^ SBW has Chooks crowing, by Tony Durkin, dated 9 September 2013.
  54. ^ SBW backs half-time apology with actions, by Glenn Jackson,, dated 7 October 2013.
  55. ^ Sydney Roosters chairman Nick Politis fires up at Test selector Bob McCarthy during club's awards night, by James Hooper, The Daily Telegraph, dated 9 October 2013.
  56. ^ Sonny Bill wins Roosters' player of year award, by James MacSmith,, dated 10 October 2013.
  57. ^ Sonny Bill Williams to play for the Roosters in 2014 and has rejected a return to rugby union, The Daily Telegraph, dated 11 October 2013.
  58. ^ Sonny Bill snubs All Blacks to stay in League, Sapa-AFP, dated 11 October 2013.
  59. ^ Sonny Bill Williams apologises after Tohu Harris is sacrificed to allow Roosters star to join the New Zealand squad, by Dean Ritchie, The Telegraph, dated 10 October 2013.
  60. ^ Sonny Bill's slippery howler leaves him embarrassed, AAP, dated 28 October 2013.
  61. ^ Williams left red-faced over slip,, dated 28 October 2013.
  62. ^ VIDEO: All tries (56–10) New Zealand Kiwis V PNG, Rugby League World Cup 2013, AFP, dated 9 November 2013.
  63. ^ "Awards".  
  64. ^ Sonny Bill Williams in tears after being named player of year, by Brad Walter, The Sydney Morning Herald, dated 28 November 2013.
  65. ^ Sonny Bill Williams takes early guilty plea, cops three-week suspension for shoulder charge, by Paul Crawley, The Telegraph, dated 10 March 2014.
  66. ^ Sydney Roosters coach Trent Robinson praises Sonny Bill Williams, by Brad Walter, Sydney Morning Herald, dated 5 April 2014.
  67. ^ Parramatta Eels gain revenge over Sydney Roosters, by David Sygall, Sydney Morning Herald, dated 12 April 2014.
  68. ^ SBW leads spite night Roosters win, by Dan Walsh,, dated 23 May 2014.
  69. ^ Team of the Week Round 13, by Jack Brady,, dated 10 June 2014.
  70. ^ Sonny Bill Williams to miss a month of NRL for Roosters with fractured thumb, by Michael Carayannis, Sydney Morning Herald, dated 26 July 2014.
  71. ^ Hayne is the NRL's No.1 says SBW, by James MacSmith, dated 7 August 2014.
  72. ^ Sonny Bill Williams proud to help develop local talents, by Tulifau Auva'a, Talamua, dated 17 August 2014.
  73. ^ Sonny Bill for the Manu?, by Sophie Budvietas, Samoa Observer, dated 19 August 2014.
  74. ^ Sonny Bill Williams drives N.R.L.’s Pacific Strategy, by Sophie Budvietas, Samoa Observer, dated 20 August 2014.
  75. ^ Patience key to big Roosters win, by Corey Rosser,, dated 24 August 2014.
  76. ^ SBW leaves with head held high, by Dan Walsh,, dated 27 September 2014.
  77. ^ Khoder Nasser: The man behind Sonny Bill Williams' anger, 24 May 2008
  78. ^ a b "Hold the phone, Sonny has something to say". Sydney Morning Herald. Fairfax. 17 January 2011. Retrieved 27 January 2011. 
  79. ^ Jancetic, Steve (7 August 2008). "Umaga the reason for Sonny's move". Fox Sports. Retrieved 10 October 2010. 
  80. ^ Gould, Phil (13 February 2005). "Million-dollar kid could expose farce corroding game". Sydney Morning Herald (Fairfax). Retrieved 27 January 2011. 
  81. ^ PAUL KENT (25 July 2015). "Sonny Bill Williams book: How SBW’s rugby defection rocked and divided two codes". THE SUNDAY TELEGRAPH. Retrieved 25 July 2015. 
  82. ^ Wildman, Rob (18 August 2008). "Sonny Bill Williams set to make Toulon debut against Saracens". Daily Telegraph (London). Retrieved 23 May 2010. 
  83. ^ "The sale of the century | ESPN Scrum". Retrieved 3 September 2011. 
  84. ^ "How to save game, from one who knows". Sydney Morning Herald. Fairfax. 16 January 2011. Retrieved 17 July 2011. 
  85. ^ Sonny Bill Williams and Roosters supremo Nick Politis plan to honour their deal, by Jamie Pandaram, The Daily Telegraph, dated 10 July 2012.
  86. ^ Hinton, Marc (7 June 2009). "Sonny Bill verdict: He held his own".  
  87. ^ "Williams set for NZRU contract". Planet Rugby. 365 Media. 6 June 2010. Retrieved 31 January 2011. 
  88. ^ Walter, Brad (23 June 2010). "SBW signs for Canterbury ... Crusaders, not Bulldogs". Sydney Morning Herald (Fairfax). Retrieved 24 June 2010. 
  89. ^ Sonny Bill to deliver a Belfast bonanza, by Brad Walter and Hamish Bidwell,, dated 5 August 2010.
  90. ^ Victory, but Sonny Bill Williams a loss, by Marc Hinton,, dated 26 August 2012.
  91. ^ "Williams named in All Blacks squad". NZ Herald (APN Holdings). 17 October 2010. Retrieved 17 October 2010. 
  92. ^ Sonny Bill Williams, by Nic Rutherford, New Zealand Rugby Museum.
  93. ^ "All Blacks: Clash of the backline heavyweights". NZ Herald. APN Holdings. 9 November 2010. Retrieved 9 November 2010. 
  94. ^ "New Zealand gripped by talk of Sonny's debut". Independent (UK). 6 November 2010. Retrieved 27 January 2011. 
  95. ^ "Sonny Bill sticks to guns despite unfriendly fire". Sydney Morning Herald. Fairfax. 23 December 2010. Retrieved 23 December 2010. 
  96. ^ "Rugby: Untouchable SBW hard to handle". Otago Daily Times. Allied Press. 14 November 2010. 
  97. ^ Brereton, Chris (13 November 2010). "Rugby-Sonny Bill Williams excels as All Blacks crush Scots". Reuters (Edinburgh). Retrieved 21 November 2010. 
  98. ^ Warren, Adrian (4 March 2011). "Sonny's side's up as Crusaders crush the Waratahs". Sydney Morning Herald. Fairfax. Retrieved 2 April 2011. 
  99. ^ Warren, Adrian (4 March 2011). "Lazy Brumbies crash to third straight loss". Sydney Morning Herald (Fairfax). 
  100. ^ NZPA (16 January 2011). "Sonny Bill stars at Twickers". Sydney Morning Herald (Fairfax). Retrieved 2 March 2011. 
  101. ^ "Crusaders crush Bulls". Sporting Life. 9 April 2011. 
  102. ^ AFP (23 April 2011). "Highlanders claim prized Crusaders scalp". 
  103. ^ Crusaders leave it late against Force, by Gavin Rich, 30 April 2011.
  104. ^ Smith, Tony (8 May 2011). "Crusaders win epic against Stormers". Rugby Heaven. Fairfax. Retrieved 16 July 2011. 
  105. ^ Smith, Wayne (30 May 2011). "Record crowd witnesses Queensland Reds' epic win over Crusaders". Australian. News Limited. 
  106. ^ Hinton, Marc (25 June 2011). "Crusaders slam Sharks to make Super semis". Rugby Heaven. Fairfax. 
  107. ^ Canterbury Crusaders power past Stormers 29–10 to set up Super 15 final with Queensland Reds, by The Associated Press, dated 2 July 2011.
  108. ^ Crowning glory for resurgent Reds, by Chris Barclay, NZPA, 10 July 2011.
  109. ^ Sonny Bill Williams could join the Waratahs,, dated 9 August 2011.
  110. ^ Lawton, Aaron (28 August 2011). "SBW could quit NZ over sponsorship snag". Rugby Heaven. Fairfax. Retrieved 12 November 2011. 
  111. ^ Walter, Brad (23 February 2011). """Sonny Bill Williams "one of the lucky ones. Rugby Heaven. Fairfax. Retrieved 29 February 2012. 
  112. ^ All Blacks spank 'Boks with six tries, 31 July 2011.
  113. ^ Robson, Toby (10 September 2011). "SBW the star attraction as All Blacks easily dispatch Tonga".  
  114. ^ All Blacks mull new position for SBW, 15 September 2011.
  115. ^ Rugby World Cup 2011: Sonny Bill Williams gives New Zealand coach Graham Henry a selection headache before France showdown, by Oliver Pickup,, 16 September 2011.
  116. ^ Centurion celebrates with silver and leaves Les Bleus in the red, by Matt Lloyd, 25 September 2011.
  117. ^ Coogan-Reeves, Alex (2 October 2011). "All Blacks v Canada – player ratings".  
  118. ^ Matthews, Chris (7 October 2011). "Hybrid SBW winging it for now".  
  119. ^ Hinton, Marc (31 October 2011). "Sonny Bill Williams signs with Chiefs". Rugby Heaven (Fairfax). Retrieved 12 November 2011. 
  120. ^ SBW pushing teen rugby despite NRL rumours,, dated 6 March 2012.
  121. ^ Sonny Bill genius takes Chiefs top,, by Gavin Rich, dated 14 April 2012.
  122. ^ Reds 42 Chiefs 27,, dated 13 May 2012.
  123. ^ Chiefs battle past Sharks to stay top of table, by Evan Pegden, dated 22 April 2012.
  124. ^ Chiefs leave it late to beat Blues,, dated 2 June 2012.
  125. ^ Crusaders stay alive with dramatic win, by Gavin Rich,, dated 6 July 2012.
  126. ^ Sonny Bill Williams finishes sting in New Zealand rugby with Super 15 victory for Chiefs over Sharks, by Jamie Pandaram, The Daily Telegraph, dated 5 August 2012.
  127. ^ Sonny Bill Williams good but not Brad, by Paul Lewis,, dated 8 July 2012.
  128. ^ THE Unofficial Super Rugby Academy Awards for 2013, By SANZAR News Service, dated 6 August 2013.
  129. ^ Dominic Burke (4 February 2015). "Sonny Bill Williams, David Pocock, James O'Connor and co: the stars ready to make their mark again in Super Rugby". FOX SPORTS. Retrieved 10 February 2015. 
  130. ^ "STATS FEATURE: THE ENTERTAINERS". SANZAR Super Rugby. 12 March 2015. Retrieved 13 April 2015. 
  131. ^ Roosters' bid for title glory the real prizefight for SBW, by Brad Walter, The Sydney Morning Herald, dated 13 October 2013.
  132. ^ SBW has last laugh as decoy ploy succeeds, The Australian, by Bret Harris, dated 20 August 2012.
  133. ^ All Blacks: Sonny Bill pumped for farewell, by Wynne Gray,, 26 August 2012.
  134. ^ It's Sushi Boy Williams, Sonny off to Japan,, by Evan Pegden, dated 10 July 2012.
  135. ^ Sonny Bill keen to play in Rugby Championship, Sports Illustrated, dated 31 July 2012.
  136. ^ Video: Sonny Bill Williams confirms move to Japan, then NRL, by 3 News online staff, dated 9 July 2012.
  137. ^ Sonny Bill Williams takes field, NZ Herald, dated 9 September 2012.
  138. ^ Sonny Bill tastes defeat on debut in Japan, ESPN, dated 9 September 2012.
  139. ^ Rugby: SBW scores first try in Japan,, dated 23 September 2012.
  140. ^ Sonny Bill Williams hurt in Japanese rugby, AAP, dated 28 October 2012.
  141. ^ a b Sonny Bill postpones Botha fight, Sapa and Reuters, dated 31 October 2012.
  142. ^ Sonny Bill Williams to return to Rugby union in New Zealand in 2015, AAP, dated 20 December 2013.
  143. ^ Sonny Bill Williams signs with Counties, Fairfax, dated 16 June 2014.
  144. ^ Sonny Bill Williams to turn out for Counties, by Shaun Eade (additional reporting from Liam Napier),, dated 30 September 2014.
  145. ^ Rugby: Sonny Bill returns, by Campbell Burnes, NZ Herald, dated 8 October 2014.
  146. ^ Finned fans flock to see Makos heroes, SBW, by Chloe Winter, The Marlborough Express, dated 13 October 2014.
  147. ^ Sonny Bill Williams return to All Blacks to be kept simple, ONE News, dated 20 October 2014.
  148. ^ ABs-Eagles Test success on and off the field, by Hamish McKay, 3 News, dated 2 November 2014.
  149. ^ Steve Hansen set to sign beyond next World Cup, by Toby Robson, The Dominion Post, dated 24 November 2014.
  150. ^ ESPN Staff. "SBW fires Chiefs past Blues in NZ derby". ESPN. Retrieved 14 February 2015. 
  151. ^ "Rampant Chiefs thrash Crusaders". AFP. 28 February 2015. Retrieved 1 March 2015. 
  152. ^ "Super Rugby: Brumbies lose game and season". AAP. 13 June 2015. Retrieved 13 June 2015. 
  153. ^ "HIGHLANDERS MOVE ON TO SEMI-fINALS". SANZAR Super Rugby. 20 June 2015. Retrieved 21 June 2015. 
  154. ^ Tim Elbra (23 June 2015). "Sonny Bill Williams: How superstar’s All Blacks finale will play out, best and worst case scenarios". FOX SPORTS. Retrieved 23 June 2015. 
  155. ^ CHRIS FOY (8 July 2015). "Samoa hoping other nations will follow the All Blacks in heading to the Pacific island". Daily Mail. Retrieved 9 July 2015. 
  156. ^ LIAM NAPIER (17 July 2015). "New Zealand vs Argentina: How the All Blacks rated". Stuff. Retrieved 17 July 2015. 
  157. ^ "Bledisloe Cup: All Blacks swing axe ahead of Eden Park Test against Wallabies". AAP (FOX SPORTS). 13 August 2015. Retrieved 13 August 2015. 
  158. ^ EMMA STONEY (19 August 2015). "Sonny Bill Williams Switches to Rugby Sevens for a Shot at Rio". The New York Times. Retrieved 19 August 2015. 
  159. ^ TOBY ROBSON (19 August 2015). "Sonny Bill Williams to go all out in bid to make New Zealand's Olympic sevens squad video". The Dominion Post. Retrieved 19 August 2015. 
  160. ^ "SBW feels he's hitting his straps". Radio New Zealand. 31 August 2015. Retrieved 31 August 2015. 
  161. ^ John Day (21 September 2015). "Opinion: Sonny Bill Williams sets Rugby World Cup benchmark". 3 News. Retrieved 21 September 2015. 
  162. ^ Gregor Paul (25 September 2015). "All Blacks fail to impress in 44-point win against Namibia". NZ Herald. Retrieved 26 September 2015. 
  163. ^ "Lelos frustrate awful All Blacks". Rugby365. 3 October 2015. Retrieved 4 October 2015. 
  164. ^ Christy Doran (10 October 2015). "Rugby World Cup: All Blacks player ratings from final pool match against Tonga at St James Park". FOX SPORTS. Retrieved 11 October 2015. 
  165. ^ David Agnew (18 October 2015). "Player ratings: All Blacks v France". TVNZ. Retrieved 18 October 2015. 
  166. ^ TOBY ROBSON (25 October 2015). "Sonny Bill Williams' compassion in moment of Rugby World Cup joy". Stuff. Retrieved 27 October 2015. 
  167. ^ "Sonny Bill Williams gives World Cup medal to stunned 14-year-old fan". The Observer. 1 November 2015. Retrieved 1 November 2015. 
  168. ^ "Sonny Bill Williams given second winners medal". Radio New Zealand. 2 November 2015. Retrieved 2 November 2015. 
  169. ^ Boxing: Best moment was one right out of the box, by Michael Burgess,, 16 December 2012.
  170. ^ Sonny Bill Williams fancies another bout, by Brad Walter,, dated 29 May 2009.
  171. ^ "Sonny Bill Williams shows talent in boxing debut". Daily Telegraph. News. 27 May 2009. Retrieved 19 April 2010. 
  172. ^ Walter, Brad (1 July 2010). "SBW gets win but turns attention to rugby". Sydney Morning Herald (Fairfax). Retrieved 1 July 2010. 
  173. ^ "SBW believes boxing will push World Cup claim".  
  174. ^ Bertola, Vera (30 August 2011). "Sonny Bill Williams to take on Scott Lewis, of Bradbury". Macarthur Chronicle. Retrieved 3 September 2011. 
  175. ^ Leeson, Josh (13 January 2011). "Sonny Bill Williams toughens up in Newcastle". Herald. Retrieved 3 September 2011. 
  176. ^ Hooper, James (13 January 2011). "Sport Confidential". Daily Telegraph. 
  177. ^ "SBW ready to knuckle down to rugby".  
  178. ^ Lawton, Aaron (1 May 2011). "Tongan giant expected to stretch SBW's skills".  
  179. ^ a b "Sonny Bill Williams – Boxer". Boxrec. Retrieved 3 September 2011. 
  180. ^ Johnstone, Duncan (6 April 2011). "Sonny Bill Williams to fight in Auckland in June".  
  181. ^ Kilgallon, Steve (20 March 2011). "Fighting talk from SBW". Fairfax. 
  182. ^ Walter, Brad (20 March 2011). "SBW packs big punch for quake victims". The Sydney Morning Herald. 
  183. ^ "VIDEO: Huge payday for Canterbury Red Cross from SBW and Sky".  
  184. ^ Sonny Bill Williams to fight for heavyweight belt, TVNZ, dated 6 December 2011.
  185. ^ Sonny Bill Williams to face 'lazy trainer' Tutaki, Toby Robson,, 7 December 2011.
  186. ^ Drug charges for SBW's boxing opponent,, dated 14 January 2012.
  187. ^ Boxing: SBW bout against Tillman confirmed,, 16 January 2012.
  188. ^ "Sonny Bill Williams knocks out Clarence Tillman in first round to win New Zealand heavyweight title". Daily Telegraph. 8 February 2012. Retrieved 21 February 2012. 
  189. ^ It's official – SBW to fight at Arena, Matt Bowen, Waikato Times, 7 December 2011.
  190. ^ Tillman KO'd by Sonny Bill Williams in first round, by Duncan Johnstone,, dated 8 February 2012.
  191. ^ Tigers trying to snare Sonny Bill – report, by David Skipwith, TVNZ, dated 13 March 2012.
  192. ^ Sonny Bill Williams locked in for next fight, by Andy Rowe,, dated 23 October 2012.
  193. ^ White Buffalo tells Sonny Bill he will face a 'real' boxer, Sbu Mjikeliso,, dated 24 October 2012.
  194. ^ SBW dangles carrot to lure Cooper, by Steve Orme, Sportal, dated 26 November 2012.
  195. ^ Angry scenes after controversial Sonny Bill Williams victory, by Patrick McKendry,, dated 9 February 2013.
  196. ^ SBW fight was fair: boxing official,, 9 February 2013.
  197. ^ Sonny Bill rules out any boxing for three years, by David Long,, dated 24 October 2013.
  198. ^ Sonny Bill Williams forfeits heavyweight boxing titles after failing to respond to challenges, AAP, dated 15 December 2013.
  199. ^ Brad Walter. "Sonny Bill Williams and Anthony Mundine slug it out ahead of the Welliver fight". Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 28 January 2015. 
  200. ^ Darren Walton. "SBW and Messam in fight night". NZN. Retrieved 19 December 2014. 
  201. ^ JAMES HOOPER (17 January 2015). "Footy superstar Sonny Bill Williams says he is fighting for respect in the boxing ring". THE SUNDAY TELEGRAPH. Retrieved 18 January 2015. 
  202. ^ Chris Barrett. "Sonny Bill Williams says bout against Paul Gallen may happen next year". The Age. Retrieved 19 December 2014. 
  203. ^ Brad Walter (1 February 2015). "Sonny Bill Williams scores convincing win against Chauncy Welliver". Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 1 February 2015. 
  204. ^ Sonny Bill Williams on falling back in love with league, his private life and Benji Marshall. Plus behind the scenes on his adidas photoshoot, by Phil Rothfield, The Daily Telegraph, dated 6 May 2014.
  205. ^ Sonny Bill knows he has swagger (+pics), by Vaimoana Tapaleao, NZ Herald, dated 8 October 2014.
  206. ^ Sonny Bill and the $2m package, by Gregor Paul, Herald on Sunday, 12 February 2012.
  207. ^ Sonny Bill Williams fronts new Rebel Sport ad campaign, Business to Business.
  208. ^ 50 Most Marketable 2014 – Sonny Bill Williams, by Michael Long, SportsPro, dated 12 May 2014.
  209. ^ Formula One ace Lewis Hamilton has been named the world’s most marketable athlete, by Connor O'Brien, Fox Sports, 20 May 2014.
  210. ^ Sonny Bill in Samoa Rugby League's wish list, by Alan Ah Mu, dated 18 March 2013.
  211. ^ Summerfield, Shaun (16 June 2011). "SBW's sister looks to extend her bragging rights". 3 News (Media Works). Retrieved 12 November 2011. 
  212. ^ "Niall Williams". Touch New Zealand. Retrieved 3 September 2011. 
  213. ^ "Touch World Cup 2011: Women's Touch Blacks Strong in Brave Loss". Touch New Zealand. Retrieved 3 September 2011. 
  214. ^ More than one sports star in SBW's family,, by Turei Mackey, dated 20 August 2011.
  215. ^ Walshaw, Nick (24 August 2007). "Who is Sonny Bill Williams?". Daily Telegraph. News. Retrieved 29 February 2012. 
  216. ^ Chiefs grind out victory over Force in Perth,, dated 6 April 2012.
  217. ^ Meng-Yee, Carolyne (13 February 2011). "Sonny Bill Williams embraces Islam". NZ Herald (APN Holdings). Retrieved 2 June 2011. 
  218. ^ "Sonny Bill gets five-month driving ban". Sydney Morning Herald (Fairfax). 1 November 2005. Retrieved 11 July 2010. 
  219. ^ Sonny Bill, Candice toilet joke,, dated 14 April 2007.
  220. ^ "Sonny Bill forgiven by girlfriend after sex scandal". NZ Herald (APN Holdings). NZPA. 15 April 2007. Retrieved 3 September 2011. 
  221. ^ "League: Sonny Bill caught with his pants down". NZ Herald. AAP. 18 June 2007. Retrieved 12 November 2011. 
  222. ^ The evolution of Sonny Bill Williams, by Jamie Pandaram, Sydney Morning Herald, dated 17 January 2011.
  223. ^ Lawton, Aaron (5 June 2011). "Struggle St rival won't spur SBW to pull punches". Sydney Morning Herald. Fairfax. Retrieved 12 November 2011. 
  224. ^ NZPA (2 February 2011). "Crusaders medical staff not bothered by Sonny Bill Williams' fitness after recent fight". Australian. News Limited. Retrieved 2 April 2011. 
  225. ^ Samoan Sports Association
  226. ^ Sonny Bill makes 'Most Influential Men' list, by ARN, dated 6 November 2013.
  227. ^ Top 49 Men: 2013 edition,
  228. ^ Adrian Proszenko (1 August 2015). "Sonny Bill Williams named in Canterbury Bulldogs team of the decade". Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 2 August 2015. 


See also




7 Wins (3 knockouts), 0 Losses, 0 Draws[179]
Res. Record Opponent Type Rd., Time Date Location Notes
Win 7–0 Chauncy Welliver UD 8 (8) 2015-01-31 Allphones Arena, Sydney
Win 6–0 Francois Botha UD 10 (10) 2013-02-08 Entertainment Centre, Brisbane, Queensland Won vacant WBA International Heavyweight title. Later stripped due to inactivity.
Win 5–0 Clarence Tillman III TKO 1 (10), 2:58 2012-02-08 Claudelands Arena, Hamilton, Waikato Region Won vacant NZPBA Heavyweight title. Later stripped due to inactivity.
Win 4–0 Alipate Liava'a UD 6 (6) 2011-06-05 Trusts Stadium, Waitakere City, Auckland Region Williams fought with split webbing to his left hand (sustained playing against Queensland),
as well as a viral infection[223]
Win 3–0 Scott Lewis UD 6 (6) 2011-01-29 Gold Coast Convention Centre, Broadbeach, Queensland Fought with stress fracture of left fibula, diagnosed towards end of All Blacks' tour of Britain in late 2010[224]
Win 2–0 Ryan Hogan TKO 1 (4), 2:35 2010-06-30 Entertainment Centre, Brisbane, Queensland Hogan's professional debut.
Win 1–0 Garry Gurr TKO 2 (4), 1:22 2009-05-27 Entertainment Centre, Brisbane, Queensland Williams's and Gurr's professional debut

Professional boxing

Pld = Games Played, W = Games Won, D = Games Drawn, L = Games Lost, Tri = Tries Scored, Con = Conversions, Pen = Penalties, DG = Drop Goals, Pts = Points Scored

Against Pld W D L Tri Con Pen DG Pts %Won
 South Africa
 United States
Total 33 31 0 2 9 0 0 0 45 93.94

All Blacks

Season Matches Tries Points
Total 118 42 168



Williams converted to Islam in 2008, stating that he found his faith in France while playing for Toulon.[16] He is the first Muslim to play for the All Blacks.[217] Prior to converting to Islam, he was involved in several alcohol-related incidents, including a low-range drink driving conviction,[218] being caught in a compromising position with Australian model and ironwoman Candice Falzon[219][220] and receiving an infringement notice and fine for public urination.[221] On his off-field indiscretions, Williams has said, "Those things have made me who I am today, I wouldn't change that."[222]

According to Greg Bearup, Williams's "one indulgence is beautiful clothes, and when he's finished with sport he'd like to design his own range, 'with sizes that fit boys like me.'"[15]

Despite being born in New Zealand, Williams is also a citizen of Samoa.[210] Williams's younger sister Niall Williams is a New Zealand international touch football player and current captain of the women's team.[15] She won gold at the 2005 Youth World Cup and silver at the 2011 Touch Football World Cup.[211][212][213] His older brother John Arthur Williams has played rugby league in both the New South Wales Cup and Queensland Cup, as well as for the Phelan Shield premiers, the New Lynn Stags, in the 2011 Auckland Rugby League season.[214] Williams is the cousin of brothers Henry and Marcus Perenara, who are former professional rugby league players.[215] He is also the cousin of rugby player and Chiefs teammate Tim Nanai-Williams[216] and Ulster Rugby player Nick Williams.

Personal life

On 5 May 2014, Williams became a global ambassador for sportswear giant Adidas—becoming the first player in rugby league history to be signed on such a deal.[204] He is also the face of clothing label Just Jeans,[205] and he has had endorsement deals with other brands, including Powerade[206] and Rebel Sport.[207] He was ranked 41st in SportsPro magazine's 50 most marketable athletes for 2014.[208][209]


On 31 January 2015, Williams prematurely returned to the ring when he fought American Chauncy Welliver at Allphones Arena in Sydney. Coincidentally, in 2012, during his stint playing rugby for Panasonic in Japan, Williams was ringside when Welliver fought Kyotaro Fujimoto.[199] Included on Williams's undercards were fellow footballers Paul Gallen, Liam Messam and Willis Meehan. The event marked the inaugural Footy Show Fight Night[200] and was broadcast, in a rare occurrence, live on free-to-air television channel GEM.[201][202] Williams went on to win the bout by unanimous points decision, with the judges scoring 80–72, 80–72 and 79–73 in his favour and Welliver praising his performance and potential.[203]

Williams vs Welliver

In October 2013, Williams revealed he would not fight again for at least another three years due to a lack of time as he pursued his footballing goals and commitments.[197] This led to him being stripped of his two boxing titles in mid-December 2013.[198]

On 24 November 2012, during the Japanese Top League's November break, Williams was due to fight South African former heavyweight contender Francois Botha at the Brisbane Entertainment Centre.[192][193] However, the bout was postponed to 8 February 2013 after Williams required surgery for a right pectoral muscle injury sustained while playing for Panasonic on 27 October.[141] The fight was for the vacant WBA International Heavyweight title. The event also marked the boxing debut of Williams's close friend and fellow rugby player, Quade Cooper, on the undercard.[194] After dominating most rounds but on the verge of being knocked out in the last round, Williams went on to win the bout by unanimous points decision, with the judges scoring 98–94, 97–91 and 97–91 in his favour.[195] However, the victory was marred by controversy because at late notice (and unbeknownst to most people) the fight was shortened to ten rounds, instead of the scheduled twelve. Australian National Boxing Federation committee member John Hogg later stated that the decision to cut the bout short was made just before the fight started, with the approval of officials and both Williams's and Botha's camps; however, Botha was not informed of the change by his own camp.[196]

Williams vs Botha

On 8 February 2012, Williams was supposed to fight Richard Tutaki for the vacant New Zealand Professional Boxing Association (NZPBA) Heavyweight Championship title at Claudelands Arena in Hamilton, after Shane Cameron vacated it to move down to the cruiserweight division.[184][185] However, it was later revealed that Tutaki was facing serious criminal charges; so he was subsequently dropped from the fight card.[186] Williams's replacement opponent was then announced to be Auckland-based American Clarence Tillman III.[187][188] The fight was dubbed the Battle for the Belt.[189] Williams went on to claim the title belt by Technical Knockout after a left hook and a series of further blows on Tillman forced referee Lance Revill to stop the fight in the first round.[190] Following the bout, Williams rejected an offer to join the boxing stable of fight promoter Don King.[191]

Williams vs Tillman

On 5 June 2011, Williams had his fourth fight when the Crusaders had a bye week. The fight, the second of three allowed under his agreement with the NZRU, took place at Trusts Stadium, Waitakere City, against Tongan Alipate Liava'a.[178] Williams won the bout by unanimous points decision: the fight scored 60–54 in his favour by all three judges.[179] The event was promoted as a Christchurch earthquake charity fight dubbed The Clash For Canterbury.[180] The fight became one of the single largest fundraisers for the 2011 Christchurch earthquake appeal when Sky donated its profits from the pay-per-view sales of the fight, and Williams made a $NZ100,000 donation from his share of TV sales—described as "one of the biggest individual donations by an athlete to a disaster appeal."[181][182][183]

Williams vs Liava'a

On 29 January 2011, Williams fought in his third professional match against Australian Scott Lewis at the Gold Coast Convention Centre, in his first fight as the main event.[173] Coincidentally, Lewis's trainer, Terry Devlin, named his youngest son after Williams—whom he called a "superb athlete".[174] Williams was initially scheduled to fight Lewis on 29 January at the Newcastle Entertainment Centre; however, the bout was moved to the Gold Coast to cross-promote Williams's Super rugby team, the Crusaders, and their pre-season game against the Queensland Reds.[175] Due to the 2010–2011 Queensland floods occurring at the same time as Williams's preparation for his bout against Lewis, as well as his chief sparring partner, Alex Leapai, being stranded by the flooding in Gatton, Williams donated 200 tickets for the fight to flood victims.[176] Williams won the six-round bout against Lewis by unanimous points decision: he was scored favourably 60–55, 60–55 and 60–54 by the three judges. A fan paid $3,890 for his autographed gloves from the bout, with the money going towards the Queensland flood relief fund.[177]

Williams vs Lewis

On 27 May 2009, Williams made his debut as a professional boxer on the undercard of close friend Anthony Mundine,[170] defeating Garry Gurr with a technical knockout (TKO) in the second round in Brisbane.[171] On 30 June 2010 he defeated Ryan Hogan in a bout that ended by TKO after only two minutes and 35 seconds. Williams described the preparation for the fight as "good off-season training" for his imminent debut for the Canterbury rugby team.[172]

After taking up boxing, Williams has often stated that it has made him a better, much more confident and mentally tougher sportsman.[169]

Sonny Bill Williams
Real name Sonny William Williams
Nickname(s) SBW
Rated at Heavyweight
Nationality New Zealand
Born (1985-08-03) 3 August 1985
Auckland, New Zealand
Stance Orthodox
Boxing record
Total fights 7
Wins 7
Wins by KO 3
Losses 0


[168][167] the following day.World Rugby Awards, before gifting his winner’s medal to a teenage fan during the lap of honour; however, he was presented with a second medal at the the final He went on to play in New Zealand's victory against Australia in [166][165] France, before playing in the semi-final victory against South Africa.against On 17 October, Williams was a part of New Zealand's record-setting quarter-final victory [164] Tonga.against The following week, he scored a try in New Zealand's final pool stage match [163] On 30 August, Williams was named in New Zealand's

On 19 August, Williams was named in coach Gordon Tietjens' initial squad to represent New Zealand at the 2016 Summer Olympics in rugby sevens. Williams said he would commit to rugby sevens full-time following the Rugby World Cup and leading up to the Olympics, in an effort to make the final squad.[158][159]

On 8 July, Williams played in New Zealand's first test of the year, in a historic match against Samoa.[155] The following week he teamed up with Ma'a Nonu in the midfield against Argentina, in the opening match of the 2015 Rugby Championship.[156] On 8 August, Williams played in New Zealand's loss against Australia in the Rugby Championship decider; he also sustained an injury which prevented him from playing in the following weeks' Bledisloe Cup match.[157]

On 14 February, Williams marked his 2015 Super Rugby return to the Chiefs with a win against the Blues in the first round.[150] Two weeks later, he scored his first try of the season against his former club, the Crusaders.[151] On 13 June, after being sidelined for a month with a back injury, Williams returned in the final round of the regular season.[152] The following week, Williams was part of the Chiefs' team that lost to the Highlanders in the quarter-finals.[153] Despite having played only ten of the sixteen regular season games, Williams had the second most offloads, and his nine line-break assists were the highest of any player with ten matches or less.[154]

2015: Chiefs

On 20 October, Williams was named in the All Blacks' squad to tour the US and UK in November.[147] On 1 November, he made his return to international rugby against the United States, scoring twice in a man-of-the-match performance.[148] He went on to play in every other game of the tour.[149]

On 20 December 2013 it was announced that Williams would return to rugby union with the Chiefs on a two-year deal starting in 2015. He also aimed to represent New Zealand in the 2015 Rugby World Cup and in rugby sevens at the 2016 Summer Olympics.[142] On 15 June 2014, Williams signed a two-year deal, starting in 2015, to play in the ITM Cup with Counties Manukau—reuniting with his former Toulon coach Tana Umaga.[143] However, on 8 October 2014 he started his contract with Counties a year early when he made his debut for the club against Auckland, only twelve days after his last game for the Roosters.[144][145] He played the following game, which was also his clubs' final game of the season.[146]

2014: Counties

On 9 July 2012, Williams announced he would be playing for the Panasonic Wild Knights in the Japanese Top League during the 2012–13 season—with the allowance to have one boxing fight during the season—before returning to rugby league.[134] The Panasonic deal was thought to be the largest one-season contract in rugby union history.[135] He was also expected to be heavily involved in the promotion of the 2019 Rugby World Cup in Japan—the country being the main host of the event.[136] On 9 September, a week after sitting out the Top League season opener to be given time to adjust after coming off recent All Blacks duties,[137] Williams made his debut for Panasonic against NTT Shining Arcs.[138] On 22 September he scored his first try for Panasonic, while playing against Toshiba Brave Lupus.[139] On 27 October, Williams scored his second try during Panasonic's eighth round victory over the Kintetsu Liners;[140] however, the match would be his final game of the season after sustaining an injury when he landed awkwardly on his shoulder following a tackle.[141]

2012–13: Panasonic

On 18 August, Williams played for the All Blacks in the first match of the inaugural Rugby Championship.[132] The following week, he ended his two-year tenure in New Zealand rugby with a man-of-the-match performance in New Zealand's Bledisloe Cup winning 22–0 victory over Australia.[133]

On 25 February, Williams made his 2012 Super Rugby debut for the Chiefs against the Highlanders, In early March he was named as the NZRU's Teen Rugby Ambassador.[120] On 14 April, Williams scored his first try for the Chiefs while playing against the Cheetahs.[121] On 13 May he scored his second try in the Chiefs' first loss since their club record of nine consecutive wins.[122][123] On 2 June he scored his third try while playing against the Blues.[124] During the mid-year rugby test series, Williams played in all three of New Zealand's matches against Ireland—scoring two tries in the last game of the series. On 6 July he scored his fourth try for the Chiefs—this time against his former club, the Crusaders.[125] On 4 August, Williams played in the Chiefs' 37–6 victory against the Sharks in the Super Rugby final—scoring the last try of the match then celebrating by leaping into the home crowd.[126] With this victory, Williams became only the third person, after Peter Ryan and Brad Thorn, to have won both an NRL and Super Rugby title.[127] He also ended the season with the most off-loads (for a second consecutive year),[128] most tackle busts, most line-breaks[129] and most turnovers gained.[130] He was also awarded the Chiefs' players' player award.[131]

2012: Chiefs

On 31 October it was announced that Williams would join the Chiefs for the 2012 Super Rugby season. His new contract allowed a "limited number" of professional boxing bouts.[119]

On 30 July, Williams played his first home test match during the second game of the 2011 Tri Nations Series.[112] On 9 September he played in the opening match of the 2011 Rugby World Cup.[113] A week later he scored his first test rugby tries during New Zealand's second game, in which he played on the right wing. The match was also the first time he had played outside the centres since playing in a handful of games on the wing and in the back row for Toulon.[114][115] He scored his third try of the tournament against France, in his second consecutive game playing on the wing.[116] On 2 October, Williams scored in his third consecutive match, whilst playing against Canada.[117] New Zealand went on to win the tournament, with Williams amassing a Rugby World Cup record of three tries as a substitute player.[118]

On 4 March, Williams made his 2011 Super Rugby debut for the Crusaders against the Waratahs, scoring a try and setting up another.[98] A week later he scored his second try against the ACT Brumbies.[99] On 27 March he returned to Twickenham to play against the Sharks in the first Super Rugby match played outside of New Zealand, Australia or South Africa.[100] On 9 April, in his fifth game for the Crusaders, Williams scored his third try.[101] On 23 April, Williams, playing off the reserves bench against the Highlanders, experienced his first rugby defeat since his All Black debut more than five months earlier.[102] A week later he scored his fourth try while playing against the Western Force.[103] On 7 May, Williams played his first rugby match in South Africa, in the Crusaders' victory over the Stormers at Newlands Stadium.[104] On 29 May he played against the Queensland Reds in a match which set a new attendance record for an Australian Super Rugby game, with 48,301 fans at Suncorp Stadium.[105] On 25 June he scored his fifth try while playing against the Sharks in the first finals week of the Super Rugby competition.[106] A week later, against the Stormers in Cape Town, he was part of the Crusaders team that became the first side since 1999 to win a Super Rugby semi-final outside their home country.[107] On 9 July, Williams was part of the Crusaders team which lost to the Reds in the grand final, held at Suncorp Stadium before an Australian provincial attendance record crowd of 52,113.[108] He ended the Super Rugby season with the most off-loads, was second to Quade Cooper for line-break assists, was in the top ten for try assists and was 13th overall for run metres—no other centre came close to Williams's off-load and line-break assist figures.[109][110] During his time in Christchurch, Williams was present when both the 2010 and 2011 Canterbury earthquakes struck.[111]

Williams playing for the Crusaders in 2011.

2011: Crusaders

He made his highly anticipated New Zealand debut at Twickenham against England on 6 November. He started at outside centre and combined with Ma'a Nonu to form the heaviest ever All Black midfield partnership at 212 kilograms (467 lb).[93][94] In playing for the All Blacks he became the first person since Karl Ifwersen, in the 1920s, to represent New Zealand in rugby union after first playing for New Zealand in rugby league.[95] On 13 November, in his second game for the All Blacks, Williams was awarded the man-of-the-match for his performance against Scotland.[96][97]

On 3 September, Williams made his Canterbury debut against Bay of Plenty after previously playing for the Belfast Rugby Football Club in the CBS Canterbury Cup.[89] He was named in the reserves and eighteen minutes into the game replaced second five-eight Ryan Crotty. Williams scored his first try in Canterbury's ITM Cup loss to Taranaki; he followed up with tries against Wellington, Otago and Counties Manukau. On 9 October, Canterbury became the new holder of the Ranfurly Shield,[90] and on 5 November they were crowned ITM Cup Champions after defeating Waikato 33–13. On 17 October, Williams was named in the All Blacks squad to tour Hong Kong and the Northern Hemisphere.[91] This would make him only the fourth person to have played for the All Blacks before having played any Super Rugby.[92]

Williams at training for the All Blacks in 2010.

2010: Canterbury

Williams's highest honour with Toulon was finishing runner-up in the 2009-10 European Challenge Cup. On 6 June 2009 he played for the Barbarians in a tour match against Australia.[86] His contract with Toulon ended in June 2010; in the same year Toulon reportedly tabled a three-year, $6 million offer to Williams, while the New Zealand Rugby Union (NZRU) came up with a $550,000 per year deal. He was also offered the French number twelve jersey at the 2011 Rugby World Cup.[36] Williams rejected Toulon's offer—reportedly the largest in rugby union history—and opted to sign with the NZRU in a bid to play for the All Blacks.[87] He then chose to play with Canterbury in the ITM Cup and the Crusaders in the Super Rugby competition.[88]

In July 2008, after linking up with new manager Khoder Nasser,[77] Williams left Australia to join the Tana Umaga coached French rugby union club Toulon.[78][79] In his controversial mid-season exit from the NRL, Williams cited salary cap concerns for his move.[78] In 2005 it had been suggested that the NRL's salary cap restrictions could prove problematic in trying to keep top-grade players in rugby league.[80] Bulldogs club officials and players were not notified of his departure until after Williams had already left for Europe using a Samoan passport.[81] Williams was eighteen months into a five-year contract with the Bulldogs, and the dispute was only resolved when Toulon paid a transfer fee of around £300,000.[82][83] According to Bulldogs CEO Todd Greenberg, Williams was "our best player [before he] walked out".[84] The circumstances in which he left the Bulldogs created a media debate in Australia and New Zealand, and Williams was the subject of considerable criticism for a departure that was described as the greatest act of treachery in the game's history.[85]

2008–10: Toulon

Rugby union

[76] to the Rabbitohs. However, Williams did not rule out a return to the Roosters in the future.preliminary final loss On 26 September, Williams's two-year tenure in the NRL ended following the minor premiers' [75] the Warriors.against After missing three games, Williams returned [74][73][72] in Samoa.Pacific Strategy and was part of a high-profile delegation to launch the NRL's [71]Footy Show During his recovery he was a guest host on the Nine Network's [70] Newcastle, he revealed he had suffered a fractured thumb and would be sidelined for up to four weeks.against Following the game [69].Melbourne Storm On 8 June, Williams scored his third try against the [68] On 23 May he scored twice against the Bulldogs to register his first points of the season.[67] On 12 April, Williams played his 100th NRL game against Parramatta—the same club he marked his debut against with the Bulldogs.[66] He returned in round five in a loss to the Bulldogs.[65]

This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Project Gutenberg are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.