Sonny Bill Williams in Roosters lineup for trial
Sonny Bill Williams has been named in a star-studded Sydney Roosters side to face Newcastle in an NRL trial at Wyong on Saturday.
The Roosters have 10 of their grand final heroes going around on the NSW Central Coast against the Knights compared to five at this weekend's Auckland Nines where New Zealander Williams would have been a major drawcard.
Joining Williams is captain Anthony Minichiello, Michael Jennings, Mitchell Aubusson, James Maloney, Daniel Mortimer, Jared Waerea-Hargreaves, Sam Moa, Boyd Cordner and Frank-Paul Nuuausala.
French international prop Remi Casty will make his first appearance for the reigning NRL premiers.
The Roosters will have one eye on next Saturday's World Club Challenge against English Super League champions Wigan, who on Wednesday night thrashed the New Zealand Warriors 46-22 in a trial match in Hamilton.
Assistant coach Craig Fitzgibbon will take the reigns against Newcastle with first-year premiership-winning mentor Trent Robinson in Auckland.
Maloney, who grew up on the Central Coast, is looking forward to the hitout.
"It's been a long pre-season and a bit disjointed as well with the World Cup seeing some of our boys not back until January, so having a game to look forward to as a group is a good feeling," Maloney said on the Roosters' website.
"It helps that I'll be back in the area I grew up in as well as it just adds to what's already an exciting weekend."