29 Sep 2009

Sonny Bill to play for France rather than the All Blacks?

7:06 pm on 29 September 2009

High profile rugby union convert and former Kiwis player Sonny Bill Williams could find he's eligible to play for France sooner than the All Blacks.

Rugby's world governing body, the IRB, specifies players seeking international honours must have either been born in the country of choice, have one of their parents or grandparents born there, or have lived there for 36 months prior to initial selection.

The French national side could soon benefit from a raft of top-class South Africans and other nationalities plying their trade in the Top 14 and now eligible for selection.

Players must also not have appeared for the national, 'A' or sevens team of another country.

All that bodes well for France, with an embarrassment of riches coming through the French first division.

They also include Williams and former Kangaroos player Mark Gasnier.

Williams is ineligible at present for the All Blacks as the New Zealand rugby union won't select overseas based players.

Williams controversially left the Bulldogs NRL club in July last year and heading to French club Toulon.