You have skipped the navigation, tab for page content

Will Chambers said some "pretty offensive things" in heated clashes against the Sharks when playing for Melbourne, but says it might be going back the other way in his NRL return against the Storm on Friday.

In a perfect piece of rugby league serendipity, Chambers – one of the chief instigators of sledging wars between the Sharks and Storm over the past decade – will play the first game of his NRL comeback on AAMI Park wearing black, white and blue.

The former Maroons and Kangaroos centre was full of praise for Sharks CEO Dino Mezzatesta and interim coach Josh Hannay for giving him a lifeline after all-but conceding his professional footballing career was over.

Chambers also had plenty of thanks for Storm coach Craig Bellamy, who along with Cronulla legend Paul Gallen offered him plenty of advice about the move before he signed on the dotted line.

"I always believed in my own ability and I always thought I had something to give back to rugby league but I also knew in today's day, age is a number and most organisations aren't willing to give a 32-year-old an opportunity," Chambers said.

Storm v Sharks - Round 8

"I'm privileged and honoured. I've played the game since I was a four year old kid and I've had two stints away from it. Until it's taken away from you, you don't know how much you really do love something."

Chambers admitted it was a big surprise that he landed at Cronulla, of all places, after his time in Japanese rugby was brought undone by the COVID pandemic.

"Obviously it was a surprise. To be honest I thought footy was all over a couple of months ago," Chambers said.

"I can't thank Dino and the board and Josh Hannay enough for giving me the opportunity to come here. It all happened pretty quickly, I was sort of in no-man's land and didn't know what was going to happen or where I was going in the next stage of my life.

"All of a sudden I got a phone call and it was Cronulla and a bit or nerves sunk in, I thought 'of all the places to turn up at', but looking back over it, everything happens for a reason and now I get the opportunity to pull on the jersey this weekend and do something special for this organisation."

Chambers admitted to a few nerves about showing up at Shark Park but existing friendships with the likes of Wade Graham and Andrew Fifita made things easier.

"I was always nervous about coming back here because of the rivalry," he said.

Which team do you love to beat the most?

"I had a chat to all of them and made sure I had all their blessings in coming here because I said some pretty offensive stuff back in the day on the footy field and as Gal would say to you, what happens on the footy field stays on the footy field.

"What's happened has happened, I dare say I'll be saying something back to Melbourne this weekend, it wouldn't worry me. It's part of the game, everyone says something at some stage, we'll see how it all pans out.

"I'm proud and privileged and honoured to get the opportunity to pull this jersey on and I'm looking forward to Friday night."

Chambers certainly isn't expecting his old teammates to take it easy on him.

"We're playing one of if not the best sides in the competition, playing Melbourne in Melbourne, the way they played on Sunday was pretty impressive so I know what to expect," he said.

"They're going to come after me. It's part and parcel of footy. Just take it and go, 'you know what, I'm going to go and give it back to them'. You don't stand there and just take it.

Looking back at the 2016 grand final

"I'm excited, I'm looking forward to it. It's going to be funny running out on AAMI Park in a different coloured jersey but I just hope I go out there, give it my best and do the best for the Sharks."

Chambers was particularly thankful for Bellamy's role in clearing his mind ahead of a return to the NRL at his former rivals.

"I left home at 13 and went to boarding school, then went from boarding school to Melbourne as a 17-year-old and Craig became my father figure in a lot of senses," Chambers said.

"He mentored me on and off the field. The last thing he did for me at Melbourne Storm was give me life membership.

"I just rang him to say 'this is what I'm thinking of doing' and he told me to go and have a crack at it and give it my best go.

"He said 'if you take a positive approach towards it and do what you've done for such a long time at [Melbourne], take the bull by the horns and have a crack at it, you never know what could happen'.

"I sat down with him for two or two-and-a-half hours and spoke to him about footy, about life and at the end of the day he said if it's going to put a smile on your face and your family, your wife's face, go and have a go at it."


NRL Magic Round Brisbane 1-Day & 3-Day Passes are now on sale with eight massive games across round 10 at Suncorp Stadium this May. With the league's best players all heading to Brisbane, you'd hate to miss it! Tickets at

Acknowledgement of Country

Queensland Rugby League respects and honours the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.

Platinum Partners

View All Partners