Jarryd Hayne is the NRL's No 1, says Sonny Bill

JAMES MACSMITH
Last updated 02:13 08/08/2014
Jarryd Hayne
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HAYNE TRAIN: "There are a lot of good players in the game, and there are a lot of good players who could make it in rugby but, at the moment, I think it is Jarryd Hayne," Sonny Bill Williams said.

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Sonny Bill Williams has declared Jarryd Hayne is the NRL's best player.

The dual international, who has won the NRL premiership, the Super Rugby title and the Rugby World Cup, says the Parramatta superstar's performances this season have made him the game's leading player.

Williams has rarely fronted the media in his final season before he again defects to rugby union in 2015, but was asked who he thought was the NRL's No.1 player while being a guest host on the Nine Network's Footy Show on Thursday night.

"There are a lot of good players in the game, and there are a lot of good players who could make it in rugby but, at the moment, I think it is Jarryd Hayne," Williams said.

"Coming back to rugby league, I watch a lot of games week in, week out and I really enjoy it."

Williams' thoughts echoed the results of Rugby League Week's annual player poll published on Thursday which revealed Hayne as the game's best player in the eyes of his peers.

Williams exits the NRL at the end of the season.

The Sydney Roosters' back-rower is sidelined with a thumb injury. He was wearing a splint on Thursday night and said he was still at least a fortnight away from a return.

"It is going well, but I am still a couple of weeks away," he said.

Despite an inconsistent year, the Roosters sit in fourth spot on the NRL ladder with five rounds to play until the finals series and Williams was confident the premiers could claim back-to-back titles in what would be his last NRL game.

"It's been an up-and-down year but I think the last week (win over St George Illawarra) was a step in the right direction and hopefully we can finish the game on a high," he said.

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Opinion poll

Who was the best player in the NRL this year?

Johnathan Thurston

Jarryd Hayne

Sam Burgess

James Graham

Ben Hunt

Kieran Foran

Gareth Widdop

Matt Moylan

Daly Cherry-Evans

Cameron Smith

Simon Mannering

Vote Result

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