O’Connor’s Reds arrival delayed

Date published: December 11 2014

New Reds recruit James O’Connor’s return to Australia has been delayed by a month after he was granted a brief extension to help his injury-hit Top 14 club Toulon.

O’Connor was set to arrive at the Brisbane-based franchise this week but will nowreturn in the new year after Toulon asked him to remain for a while longer due to an injury to fellow Australian Matt Giteau.

The former Wallaby is now expected to start in Toulon’s crucial home European Champions Cup clash with Leicester this weekend.

“We’ve been working with James for some time, who has been in the process of tying up his personal affairs before returning home,” Queensland Rugby Union chief executive Jim Carmichael told Fox Sports.

“Due to injuries at Toulon, we’re happy for him to stay there for a couple more weeks.

“We believe these extra games in Europe will assist James to prepare for the Super Rugby season.

“James will be back training with the Reds at Ballymore in early January in preparation for our pre-season games.”