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SBW retires: Dual international superstar hangs up his boots

A day after Cameron Smith announced his retirement, another superstar has officially called it a day with Sonny Bill Williams posting a heartfelt farewell on social media.

SBW will continue his professional boxing career but has decided to hang up his boots after a glittering career in the rugby union and rugby league arenas.

The 35-year-old finished the NRL season with the Sydney Roosters last year and plans to stay involved in an off-field capacity in 2021.

"Sonny's been in twice now in the last two weeks," said Roosters coach Trent Robinson.

"It's the end of a career for him - he spoke about it to me when he came back at the end of July last year when he started, he wanted to have a look at that and he's come back in to learn.

"He's going to do some media and some commentary, he's also going to fight and he's going to learn some of the coaching tools.

The best of SBW

"He's definitely got the tools to be a coach - he's got presence, he's got game understanding in-depth and intuition in the game."

Williams burst onto the scene as a teenager in 2004, winning a premiership with  Canterbury in his debut season.

He left the game in 2008 to play rugby and returned in 2013 to win a premiership with the Roosters.

"A massive thankyou to the public & fans for all the support over years," he posted on Twitter.

"To my many teammates, thanks for the lessons & help along the way. It wasn’t a perfect journey, but the lessons have helped shape me into the man I’m proud to be off the field today. #AlwaysAlhamdullilah"

He represented the All Blacks at three Rugby World Cups.

After playing a prominent role in the Roosters' victory over Manly in the 2013 grand final, he was named the International Rugby League player of the year at the end-of season World Cup in England.

Despite only playing for the Roosters in 2013 and 2014, he was chosen in the NRL Team of the Decade by a panel of experts which included Craig Bellamy, Phil Gould, Trent Robinson, Ricky Stuart, Mal Meninga, Andrew Johns, Bob Fulton and Wally Lewis.

Williams was only the second player selected for the All Blacks after having represented the Kiwis at Test level and was one of just 14 players in rugby union history to have won successive World Cups (2011 and 2015).

He was also a member of New Zealand Rugby 7s team at the 2016 Olympics in Rio.

Roosters v Sea Eagles - Round 1

Williams played only five matches with the Roosters last year, finishing his NRL career with 123 matches across eight seasons in three stints.

He played 12 matches for the Kiwis as well as 58 appearances for the All Blacks.

Acknowledgement of Country

Sydney Roosters respect and honour the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.