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Sonny Bill doubt for opening clash
ESPNscrum Staff
February 12, 2012
Sonny Bill Williams celebrates his first round knockout against Clarence Tillman III, Battle for the Belt, Claudelands Event Centre, Hamilton, New Zealand, February 8, 2012
Sonny Bill Williams celebrates his first round knockout © Getty Images
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Players/Officials: Sonny Bill Williams
Tournaments/Tours: Super Rugby
Teams: Chiefs | New Zealand

Sonny Bill Williams is a doubt for the opening game of the 2012 Super Rugby season after pulling a hamstring in the build-up to his fight with Clarence Tillman III.

Williams made light work of Tillman last week when he won by a first round knockout but the All Blacks centre sustained the injury in sprint training while with the Sydney Roosters in the run up to the bout. But Chiefs coach Dave Rennie is still optimistic of the All Blacks centre featuring in the first rounds of the tournament saying: "He should be fine.

"We gave him last week off to concentrate on his boxing but he has been running with the team."

Rennie, however, whose side overcame the Highlanders 38-36 on Saturday, claimed that he was yet to make a decision over whether he would risk the centre against the Highlanders in their opening match of the tournament on February 25.

And Rennie claimed that he has no qualms over Williams pursuing his boxing career as much of the conditioning work is transferable to rugby. "He's been fine," Rennie said, "We've been conscious of the fact that he's been smashing himself at night in the boxing gym so we've taken him out of some of our conditioning stuff. He has been doing our skill-based work and he's got a pretty good idea of what we want to do."

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