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SBW pushing teen rugby despite NRL rumours

Published: 6:13PM Tuesday March 06, 2012 Source: ONE Sport

Sonny Bill Williams has been named as the NZRU's Teen Rugby Ambassador, despite widespread rumours that he will be returning to the 13-man code next season.

The Chiefs' star was in South Auckland today, ironically spreading the rugby gospel in an area typically famous for its rugby league players.

He was joined by Chiefs midfield partner Richard Kahui at Manurewa High School this afternoon, playing rippa rugby and encouraging students to register to play union for the upcoming season.

Williams, who is off-contract with the NZRU at the end of the year, refused to speak to any media at the event, despite three requests from the rugby union.

It is widely speculated that the double international and New Zealand heavyweight boxing champion will return to the NRL next season after he was spotted meeting with Roosters boss Nick Politis in Sydney in January.

Last week league great Matthew Johns added fuel to the fire by saying that the 26-year-old will "100% be at the Roosters next season".

Meanwhile, Kahui was happy to speak to media this afternoon and said the day wasn't just about competing with the rival code.

"People are always going to play what they want to play, but we're here to generate the hype for the guys that genuinely want to play rugby and spend some time with the guys that do," he told ONE News.

"We saw a lot of young fellers in the gym there. They're just excited about rugby and want to get involved in rugby and make the most of it."

The event was one of a number of NZRU initiatives designed to promote rugby to youngsters, with players who have previously registered to play set to receive a postcard and text message from Richie McCaw.