It's official: Ioane to Stade Français

Date published: May 2 2013

The Reds have confirmed winger Digby Ioane will leave at the end of the 2013 season to continue his career overseas in France.

The Reds have confirmed winger Digby Ioane will leave at the end of the end of the Super Rugby season to continue his career overseas in France.

Ioane's manager has advised the Australian Rugby Union (ARU) that he will not be seeking an extension to his current national contract and will therefore be leaving.

The 27-year-old has represented the Reds on 63 occasions across six seasons since debuting against the Highlanders in 2008, highlighted by Queensland's memorable Super Rugby title triumph in 2011.

Ioane has also been recognised at a national level where he has accumulated 34 Wallaby caps and was a member of Australia's 2011 World Cup squad.

Queensland Rugby CEO Jim Carmichael confirmed Ioane would honour his remaining commitments with the Reds before leaving the organisation.

“During recent face-to-face discussions with Digby he made it patently clear that he has no interests in playing anywhere in Australia apart from the Reds, but has been given an opportunity in France to secure the financial future for himself and his family, said Carmichael .

“This was an extremely difficult decision for Digby to make but as the provider for his family, we completely understand his position to pursue a deal overseas.”

Carmichael said the organisation and Ioane would part ways on very good terms despite the difficulties faced during the last few weeks due to the public interest surrounding his future and the speculation of a 'falling out' with Queensland Rugby.

“Digby reaffirmed in our discussions that he wanted to stay with the Reds and Australian Rugby, but he needed to also consider the financial security of he and his family. As a consequence, he will leave Queensland Rugby at the end of the Super Rugby season with our blessings and thanks for the contributions he has made over many years,” Carmichael said.

“Digby will always be part of the Reds family, and for now he remains committed to finishing his time with the Reds on a high note and with no regrets as he continues to play an important role in our pursuit of another Super Rugby title.”

According to the French radio station RMC, Ioane has signed with Top 14 outfit Stade Français on a two-year deal.

Stade Français are currently sitting in ninth spot in the Top 14 standings, but last weekend made the Challenge Cup final after defeating Perpignan.