Botha unveiled by Toulon
July 7, 2011
Botha joins Toulon from Pretoria based franchise the Bulls © Getty Images
Springboks second-row Bakkies Botha has been unveiled by Toulon and completes a three-year deal with the Top 14 side.
Botha, whose move was confirmed by Toulon in March, will join the French side after the 2011 Rugby World Cup, if he is selected in Peter de Villiers' final 30-man squad. Botha was recently ruled out of the Springboks' trips to Australia and New Zealand in the Tri-Nations with a knee injury but will hope to be fit to play some part in their campaign.
The uncompromising lock, who has 72-caps for South Africa, hopes to finish his career at Toulon. "It may well be my last challenge," Botha said. Botha, however, will not alter his enforcer approach to second-row play. "I will not change the way I play. I have been playing hard for the last ten years. I will do the same here."
Toulon president Mourad Boudjellal used the occasion to unveil Toulon's new shirt for the 2011-12 season and is expected to meet Stade Francais honorary president Max Guazzani on Friday to discuss the future of centre Mathieu Bastareaud. The French bulldozing centre has been linked with Boudjellal's side in the past and is reported to be keen on a move to Toulon. Botha will be joined at Toulon for the 2011-12 season by fellow new signings flanker Steffon Armitage, fly-half Matt Giteau and rugby league convert Willie Mason.
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
"The thirst for knowledge has seen coaches break away from the confines of rugby and look to America." Tom Hamilton on the two-way learning process
On Saturday, New Zealand face the USA in a match that has been 40 years in the making. Tom Hamilton finds the atmosphere building in Chicago
Most modern rugby players will not know the name Ray Williams but they should be eternally grateful to him, writes John Taylor
With the All Blacks playing the USA Eagles this weekend, Craig Dowd says rugby is ready to make a professional breakthrough Stateside