He was being chased by up to as many as seven clubs, but, in the end, he has signed with neither, as he has made the decision to conduct his Mormon mission, which will start at the completion of the 2011 NRL season.
After knocking back one offer worth as much as 1.5 million dollars, William Hopoate said that although the offers were quite tempting, and the process to make his decision gradual, religion had to come first in his mind.
“I spoke about it with Mum and Dad and Tyran (Smith, his manager), they advised me on things but at the end of the day they left it up to me,” Hopoate told reporters on Friday.
“I told the boys this is not something I’m forced to do or something I have to do, this is something that I want to do so that was probably the main purpose behind it.”
Whilst some people may think that to an extent, it can be perceived as an element of betrayal, after Manly’s hard work to get him in first-grade, for Manly Chairman Scott Penn, he supports the decision entirely.
“We’d like to congratulate Will on a strong decision,” Penn said.
“We certainly support you, you have been an integral part of the Sea Eagles family.
“We’ve loved watching you develop and certainly would very much like to see that continue so we’d very much like to see you come back once you’ve fulfilled your mission.”