Opposition warned to 'beware of Sonny Bill'

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 26 October, 2010, 12:00am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 26 October, 2010, 12:00am

All Blacks right winger Cory Jane says defences around the world had better be afraid of Sonny Bill Williams and believes the presence of the former rugby league star in midfield could create more space for the backline.

'If Sonny Bill Williams is able to do what he has done for Canterbury in the ITM Cup back home at the international level, he can be like Jonah Lomu, a big fellow who can destroy defences with everyone else running off him,' Jane (pictured) said, with a huge grin.

With 20 tests under his belt, Jane has secured the right-wing position this season, playing all nine tests in an unbeaten run so far - six in the Tri-Nations and three in its build-up.

The All Blacks will be hoping to extend that form and a winning streak of 15 on Saturday. Whether Williams will start is doubtful, but he could be in the picture at some stage of the match.

'He [Williams] does the same thing Ma'a [Nonu] does, which is create space and can offload. But he is a big boy and people will have to watch him,' Jane said. 'He's been in camp for a few days and we just have to see how he goes, but it looks like he has got the goods.'

The 190cm, 105kg Williams signed an 18-month contract worth NZ$500,000 (HK$2.89 million) with the New Zealand Rugby Union in June. He is the only uncapped player in the 30-man squad.

Jane said the All Blacks' environment would help bring Williams on rapidly.

'The best thing being a part of the All Blacks is that the coaches see every little detail, your passes, what lines you are running and so on, and they can help him out. The boys can help him out as well,' the Wellington Hurricanes bolter said.

Jane, 27, is one of the many players in the squad to start out in sevens. He played in the 2006 Hong Kong event and was part of the squad that year who won the gold medal at the Commonwealth Games.

'My first test match was in Hong Kong in 2008. I got six minutes in that game. I hope I get a little bit longer this time,' Jane said.