Sonny Bill moves on from Dunedin horror

A bout of the dropsies against the Wallabies in Dunedin a year ago has left no scarring for fit-again All Black Sonny Bill Williams.

Cross-code star Williams is poised to be recalled for the third Test against France on Saturday in a swift recuperation which has foiled a planned a holiday with his family.

Keyhole surgery on a knee problem three weeks ago was meant to require six weeks’ recovery but the 32-year-old is instead in line for a 47th cap and just his second Test appearance at the Forsyth Barr Stadium indoor venue.

The first came last August when Williams’ spilled a handful of early passes and helped open the door for Australia before the hosts charged home to retain the Bledisloe Cup.

The lapses were still on his mind, but not in a negative sense, as he spoke about a more mature approach to his rugby in what has been an injury-wracked season.

“What’s the worst that can happen? Probably last year’s Bledisloe is the worst thing that can happen after I dropped the first three balls. But I’m still here and still smiling and still keen to give it a go,” he said.

“I’m just keen to get out there and if I do and that’s starting or off the bench or whatever, I’m going to have a crack, bro.”

Nearly at the 10-year anniversary of his infamous walkout from his Canterbury Bulldogs NRL contract, the father of two insists his has a fresh perspective on sport.

After starting all but one Test last year – when suspended from the deciding Test against the British and Lions – Williams is taking nothing for granted as he paces himself towards a third World Cup appearance.

“Obviously I’m not 100 per cent physically because I haven’t played for a while but I back myself through, I guess, my knowledge of the game and the way I have prepared and my mental state – how I cope with that,” he said.

“You have to be honest with yourself. You have to be vulnerable, you can’t suppress those emotions.”


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