Wellington (AFP) – The prospect of formidable New Zealand wing Julian “The Bus” Savea joining French club Toulon next season was welcomed Friday by France captain and Toulon centre Mathieu Bastareaud.
New Zealand Rugby has refused to comment on reports that the prolific try-scorer, with 46 tries from 54 Tests, was headed offshore.
But Bastareaud applauded the move with Savea expected to head to France after the Super Rugby season.
“This is big news for us, one of the best wingers in the world, I’m just happy for the club,” Bastareaud, who is also the Toulon captain, said as he prepared to lead France in the second Test against the All Blacks in Wellington on Saturday.
Savea, 27, last played for the All Blacks in the third Test against the British and Irish Lions last year.
There are vacancies looming at Toulon with the departure of Fijian Semi Radradra and former All Blacks centre Ma’a Nonu.