Rugby League Expert & Columnist
Phil Clarke: Sonny Bill Williams is the boost rugby league needs
"My only questions might be whether Williams can stay injury-free, and whether the rest of the Toronto Wolfpack squad can lift to his level," says Sky Sports pundit
Last Updated: 07/11/19 8:34pm
Sky Sports pundit Phil Clarke gives his views as Toronto Wolfpack secure one of the biggest names in the history of world rugby ahead of the 2020 Super League season...
Sonny Bill Williams has signed for Toronto Wolfpack! I believe it's the most exciting news for rugby league since the turn of the century. The sport needs a boost - and the reputed $10m man can kick-start the revival.
His ability is one thing, but his aura can lift a whole club.
Speaking to friends at the Roosters, his arrival made a difference from day one. His standards of preparation were beyond anyone already part of the organisation - and I believe Sonny Bill will invigorate not just Toronto, but the entire competition.
My only questions might be whether Williams can stay injury-free, and whether the rest of the Wolfpack squad can lift to his level.
At a time where many sports in Britain - football, cricket, both codes of rugby - are competing to increase junior participation, SBW's standing on and off the pitch is a significant boost for the 13-a-side game.
We know all about his playing skills, but his personality away from matchday could have a huge impact on the whole of Super League. Remember what Cristiano Ronaldo's arrival at Old Trafford did for the Premier League back in 2003?
I can't wait to see the two-time NRL and two-time Rugby World Cup winner walk out at Headingley on Sunday, February 2 - live on Sky Sports.
Watch Super League XXV live on Sky Sports from January 30, 2020.