December 10, 2023

Black Ferns Sevens star to reportedly make code switch to sign with NRLW

Niall Guthrie.

Black Ferns Sevens star Niall Guthrie will reportedly make a code switch from rugby to league, after agreeing to terms with the Gold Coast Titans in the NRLW.

The younger sibling of former All Blacks and NRL star Sonny Bill Williams has been a regular member of a dominant NZ women’s sevens outfit since 2015.

But according to the Sydney Morning Herald, Guthrie has agreed to join the expanded 10-team competition, with the contract window yet to open for 2023.

The 34-year-old made 159 appearances for the Black Ferns Sevens, scoring 43 tries in a decorated eight-year career, becoming one of the side’s most senior members.

Guthrie was an integral part of the NZ team that won gold at the 2018 Commonwealth Games at Gold Coast, and silver at the 2016 Olympics at Rio de Janeiro.

However, she now looks poised to join a growing exodus of rugby players in New Zealand making the switch across the Tasman.

She will join a Titans outfit determined to better last year’s performance, having claimed the wooden spoon with only one win from their five matches.

Leading that charge is coach and former NRL Integrity Unit chief investigator Karyn Murphy, revealing her plans to develop the region’s younger players.

“In the NRLW stage we’re only new,” Murphy recently told Titans media.

“We’ve only been here a year. We want success like every club. We know we’ve got to build there. I’m sure you’ll see us improving this season ahead. Important for us is the development. 

“Since my time here I have seen how much talent we have in the area and make sure the girls coming through have that real understanding and can see that pathway to make it into the NRLW space.

“The amount of talent in the young women coming through, to see that firsthand in the past few months, we want to keep them. 

“We’d love to keep as many here as possible and want them to want to play for us and Titans means something to them and not want them to want to go anywhere else. I’m excited and can honestly see the Titans looking good for years to come.”

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