x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 28 July 2017

Sonny Bill Williams set for All Blacks debut

The former New Zealand rugby league international will make his debut for the All Blacks in Saturday's Test against England at Twickenham.

LONDON // The former New Zealand rugby league international Sonny Bill Williams will make his debut for the All Blacks in Saturday's Test against England at Twickenham.

The 25-year-old Williams, who switched codes from the 13-man game in 2008, has been named at outside centre, replacing Conrad Smith in one of four changes to the New Zealand team that lost to Australia at the weekend.

The winger Hosea Gear, scrum-half Alby Mathewson and lock Samuel Whitelock have also been handed starts.

Williams left NRL side the Canterbury Bulldogs to join French Top 14 team Toulon two years ago but moved back to New Zealand over the summer.

The All Blacks assistant coach Steve Hansen said today "we know he is a classy individual. He has the whole package."