The Waratahs have confirmed the signing of Australia Sevens player Bradley Wilkin on a two year contract.
Back-rower Wilkin, who is currently recovering from a shoulder reconstruction, will join the Waratahs from early October.
Waratahs head coach Daryl Gibson said he was delighted to have Wilkin on board for the 2016 season and beyond, and was looking forward to see him develop in the Super Rugby training environment.
“Brad has a tremendous amount of natural talent, and we have seen some outstanding work from him at the schoolboy and U20 level,” Gibson told the Waratahs' official website.
“Unfortunately he’s had a tough run of injuries that have hampered his progress, but we’re confident he will thrive in the training environment we have here at the Waratahs.
“He’s a key long-term prospect for us, and he’ll have the opportunity to hone his skills and learn from one of the best flankers in the world in Michael Hooper.
“Along with Jack Dempsey, Brad will add some good depth to our squad in the back row – he’s got a big engine and I’m looking forward to seeing him play a big role in the side.”
Waratahs assistant forwards coach Cam Blades said his exceptional talent would add considerable value across the field for the side.
“Brad is very strong in open play, and has shown he is excellent across the ground and over the top of the ball,” he explained.
“He’s got a great work ethic and character, and we expect him to fit in well with the rest of the squad.”
Raised in the central west town of Yeoval in New South Wales, Wilkin was educated at Brisbane’s Iona College. He played in the Australian Schoolboys in 2012 and 2013, and was a member of the 2012 Australian Schoolboys side which defeated NZ Schoolboys in an historic match in Auckland.
Recruited to the Australian Men’s Sevens program in January 2015, Wilkin played in two tournaments with the team – Hong Kong (March) and Tokyo (April).
Playing for Queensland in the National Sevens Championships earlier this year, he was named Player of the Tournament despite his side losing to New South Wales in the final.
Wilkin played several matches in the Australian side which contested the 2015 World U20 Championships before injuring his shoulder and ending his tournament.