Controversial rugby legend Sonny Bill Williams has broken down with joy in a touching video sending off his two boys to school for the first time.
In a post to X on Tuesday, New Zealander Mr Williams, who played for the All Blacks, shed tears as his sons Zaid and Essa donned their uniforms for the first time.
“My kids, it’s their first day of school … I’m getting emotional,” he said, wiping the tears from his eyes.
“My two boys, they are going to school this year.
“I just wanted to say, life goes fast. Alhamdulillah. Enjoy them. Hold onto them. Especially with what’s going on in the world today … My wife’s crying too. Grateful for everything. Have a good day guys.”
Mr Williams converted to Islam in 2009 and ‘Alhamdulillah’ is an Islamic expression of praise and thanks to God.
Mr Williams and his wife Alana have four children, daughters Iman and Aisha and sons Zaid and Essa.
The gentle expression of a love contrasts with some of the fury and controversy Mr Williams has triggered in other social media posts.
In December last year following the outbreak of war between Israel and terror group Hamas, Mr Williams posted a video questioning whether the atrocities committed by Hamas against Jews on October 7 had actually happened.
“40 beheaded babies, proven to be untrue. Babies intentionally burnt in their cribs alive, proven to be untrue,” he said in the video while wearing a keffiyeh, or Palestinian headscarf.
Mr Williams also questioned whether Israeli hostages had been raped by Hamas.
In a follow-up video, Mr Williams said Israel’s response to the Hamas attack was not war but a “genocide”.