Planet Rugby

Toulon boss confirms O'Connor deal

22nd December 2013 17:37


James O Connor of London Irish acknowledges the crowd

Bye-bye Exiles: James O'Connor

Toulon manager Bernard Laporte has confirmed that exiled Australian playmaker James O'Connor has agreed to join the European champions next season.

Local newspaper Var Martin reported on Sunday that Laporte had confirmed the 23-year-old former Wallaby would play in RCT colours next year, though did not specify if a contract had been inked nor the duration of the agreement.

For his part, Toulon President Mourad Boudjellal has acknowledged that contact has been established with the player, but stopped short of confirming a sealed deal.

With Jonny Wilkinson yet to decide his future beyond the end of this season, O'Connor is a potential candidate to replace the Englishman, who has become an icon in Toulon.

Earlier this weekend L'Equipe reported that it is a "certainty" that O'Connor will leave London Irish for the French club while La Provence echoed the information.

In November, O'Connor was spotted meeting with Boudjellal and director of recruitment Laurent Emmanuelli, 24 hours after his London Irish debut.

O'Connor's contract with Irish only runs until the end of the Aviva Premiership season, having been released by the Australian Rugby Union earlier this year.

The 44-Test cap Australian is set to join fellow former Wallabies Matt Giteau and Drew Mitchell in Toulon.

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