Sonny Bill Williams has backed a former All Blacks teammate to make a successful switch to the NRL.

Sonny Bill Williams has backed former All Blacks teammate TJ Perenara to make a successful switch to the NRL following reports the Sydney Roosters are keen on poaching the rugby union halfback.

It was revealed on Thursday the Roosters had flagged an interest in Perenara, with the Tricolours hopeful of signing the New Zealand star on a one-year deal worth close to $130,000, according to a Sydney Morning Herald report.

The 29-year-old is off contract with New Zealand Rugby at the end of the year but is currently on a one-year deal with Japanese side Red Hurricanes.

Perenara, a veteran of 69 Tests, is no stranger to the game of rugby league.

He’s a first cousin of former NRL player Marcus as well as current referee and former star Henry.

Sonny Bill Williams of New Zealand and TJ Perenara of New Zealand are seen after the Rugby World Cup 2019 Group B game between New Zealand and South Africa at International Stadium Yokohama on September 21, 2019 in Yokohama, Kanagawa, Japan. (Photo by Adam Pretty/Getty Images)

Williams revealed on Friday he had recently spoken with Perenara surrounding a switch to the NRL.

“What a special addition that would be,” Williams told Nine.

“I know him personally and if he came over here he would be under no illusion the work that would need to be put in to be a successful rugby league player.

“He comes from a league background.

“I’ve talked to him at length about how much he loves rugby league and he would love to give it a crack one day.

“Most likely we will see him soon, hopefully.”

Sonny Bill Williams

Williams, a former All Black and premiership-winner with the Roosters, said he could see his ex-rugby union teammate making an immediate impact in the No.14 jersey.

“I would see him as a hybrid,” he added.

“Initially as that No.14 player that can come on at hooker or play at No.6.

“The energy he brings to a team, his fitness, his strength physically – I think he would make a great rugby league player.”

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