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Family death ate away at league's Sandow

AAP logoAAP 23/11/2016

Chris Sandow's decision to walk out on Super League club Warrington was because of a family member's death and homesickness the former NRL star says.

The halfback raised the ire of the Wolves when he informed the club he would not be returning to pre-season training despite having a year to run on his lucrative contract.

He was blasted by Warrington chief executive Tony Smith as a "pain" in a bitter parting shot to his former star.

While Sandow, who is back in Australia preparing for a boxing match in December, acknowledged he did the wrong thing, he said the death of an uncle late in 2015 ate away at him.

"It's a long way from home and I'm really family orientated," Sandow told foxsports.com.au.

"When I went over there, my uncle, my dad's brother (Ashley Hill), passed away from cancer. We're really close. He's like a dad to me.

"I came over for his last couple of weeks when he got really sick but then he lasted another month and he passed away so I had to come back in a matter of weeks.

"It broke my heart. I've grown up with all my family around me. My uncle is a big part of me being where I am today and it's sad I couldn't see him out."

Sandow said he was thinking of pulling the pin on the deal for some time after Hill's death and as such conceded his communication with the Super League club had been poor.

But he's hopeful that an NRL return might yet be on the cards despite something of a chequered history in the competition.

He left South Sydney for a big money deal at Parramatta in 2012 but after an up and down few years with the Eels he departed in acrimonious circumstances following a falling out with coach Brad Arthur in 2015.

St George Illawarra on Tuesday categorically ruled out making a play for the 27-year-old Cherbourg product.

Sandow admitted he had yet to receive an offer from an NRL club but harboured a desire to return to Australia's top flight competition.

"I wish they (clubs) were knocking at the door. It's only family members asking for money," he said.

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