Bakkies Botha’s Toulon move blocked

The Blue Bulls have refused to allow South Africa lock Bakkies Botha to join French second division Toulon.

Ian Schwartz, media spokesperson for the Blue Bulls, said on Monday that Botha would not be released from his contract.

”We had no option but to decline his request,” Schwartz was quoted as saying. ”We have invested in him and his contract was last year renewed for a further five years.

”Releasing him would send a message to other players that contracts are not binding, which in turn could conceivably lead to an exodus.”

Earlier, French sports daily L’Equipe said the 28-year-old World Cup winner had agreed a three-year contract with Toulon.

The newspaper had said Botha could join the club as early as April, linking up with fellow Springbok lock Victor Matfield, former Australia scrumhalf George Gregan and former All Black flyhalf Andrew Mehrtens. — Reuters

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