Bulldogs enter 'informal' discussions to lure Sonny Bill Williams back to NRL - report

Veteran All Black Sonny Bill Williams is reportedly in "informal" talks to once again change codes and return to his first NRL club, the Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs.

Nine's Wide World of Sports reports Williams has entered discussions with the Bulldogs 11 years after he sensationally walked out on them to play rugby union in France.

The Bulldogs hope to sign Williams for next year with his current contract with New Zealand Rugby and the Blues finishing after this year's World Cup in Japan.

The 33-year-old played 73 games for the Bulldogs after making his debut in 2004 as a 19-year-old but cut his NRL career short when he infamously walked out on the club to play rugby in France.

Williams did make a return to the NRL though, playing two seasons for the Roosters in 2013 and 2014 where he guided the Sydney club to a premiership in his first season.

But the Bulldogs face stiff competition for Williams' signature with a report last month Canadian rugby league club, the Toronto Wolfpack, willing to offer the cross-code star a whopping one-year, $5 million contract.

Toronto's billionaire owner, David Argyle, said it was a one year deal with part of the salary exempt under the competition's marquee player rules.

"We are working towards making Sonny Bill Williams a Wolfpack player for 2020. We would love to have him join the Wolfpack family and we will pay whatever it takes to make that happen," Argyle told Fox Sports Australia at the time.

"The excitement he would bring to the sport of rugby league in this country would be incredible.

"Sonny is a phenomenal athlete. He is rugby's LeBron James and we see his recruitment as bigger than when David Beckham joined LA Galaxy. He is box office and puts bums on seats.

"It may be one of his last seasons and I am sure that rugby fans - whether league or union - across North America will travel to Toronto to see a player of his quality represent the Wolfpack."

Sonny Bill Williams and Augustine Pulu discuss a plan of attack during the Highlanders and Blues Super Rugby match. week 2 game held at Forsyth Barr Stadium, Dunedin, New Zealand. 23 February 2018. Copyright Image: Derek Morrison /
Sonny Bill Williams and Augustine Pulu discuss a plan of attack during the Highlanders and Blues Super Rugby match. Source: Photosport

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