Brisbane Broncos: Sonny Bill Williams hits back at Payne Haas rumours

Michael Holland
Payne Haas

Sonny Bill Williams has hit out at suggestions he is instructing Payne Haas what to do regards his contract wrangle with the Broncos and says the 22-year-old is his own man and deserves respect.

Brisbane were left stunned when they received an email from the Haas camp requesting the immediate release from his contract. It was brought on by the club’s refusal to upgrade his current contract, which still has over two years to run.

Haas is reported to be earning $750,000 a year. That will increase over the next couple of years, but will not touch the reported $1million plus he believes he is worth.

There was a huge fall-out after the news broke and Haas was booed by his own supporters against the Titans. He is currently with New South Wales preparing for game one of State of Origin on Wednesday.

The request has since been withdrawn and all talks are on hold until the end of the season. However the whole situation is never far away from the headlines. Some have taken aim at the player’s management for the way the situation has been handled. And Williams has also seen himself dragged into it.

The former Sydney Roosters star is very close to Haas and it has been claimed that he is also pulling the strings. This is something he denies. But at the same time he says Haas has his full support with whatever he chooses to do. Williams also says Haas is his own man and calls the shots.

Sonny Bill Williams hits back

“I find it quite amusing that I am being painted as the person telling Payne to break his contract,” Williams told the Sydney Morning Herald. “I want to make it very clear, I support Payne in everything and anything he wants to do in his career decisions or in any direction he decides to go in.

“He has a direct line to me when he wants to discuss his future, his faith and his family. Payne is my brother and I have his back and his best interests at the very front of my mind. But I have not instructed him to do anything. He’s his own man and people need to respect him for that.

“To say otherwise is an insult to him, and there is a lot more to Payne than people know.”

Williams also took aim at some of the media for commenting on things they know nothing about.

“The commentary regarding Payne from certain uninformed elements of the media, and when I say uninformed. I ask, have they spoken to Payne? is based on the interest of their paymasters,” he added. “It would be nice if they formed their views after speaking to those they are talking about.

“Instead they’d rather character-assassinate someone for a few bucks.”