Parramatta Eels’ forward Reni Maitua has offered to play for nothing in 2013 if it means bringing good friend Sonny Bill Williams to the club.
Maitua says of Williams, who has also been linked to Sydney Roosters: “We’re obviously not as close as we used to be – he lives in New Zealand.
“I’ve had a couple of conversations with him about where he’s at. I don’t want to mess with his head. He’s playing rugby now. But after next year he’s eligible to come back to league, after the Canterbury contract. I throw a few cheeky comments in there (to him), that it would be great to pack down in a scrum again with him in the back row before I retire
“I’m a bit older than him. I love the kid and I’d love the opportunity to play alongside him again. I’ll be doing whatever I can. I’ll play for free if it means getting him an extra .. whatever in 2013. I’m sure most blokes would, to have him at the club.”
Maitua admits there are “demons” associated with his reunion at Parramatta next year with Willie Tonga and Ben Roberts, whom he was close to during his partying ways at Belmore. But he is convinced they are all now mature enough not to slip back into old habits.