Bath have completed the signing of Western Province captain and former South Africa back rower Luke Watson.
Sport 24 reports that the 25-year-old has agreed a two-year deal with the Premiership club and will join after this year’s Currie Cup competition, which ends in October.
Watson has won 10 caps in a turbulent career with the Springboks.
“Joining Bath is a new beginning and an opportunity to grow and experience the game in the top echelons of northern hemisphere rugby,” he said.
“Playing in the Cape for Western Province and the Stormers has been, and remains, a privilege.
“We still have some unfinished business in this year’s Currie Cup, and I will be giving my all to ensure a successful season for the team and the Newlands faithful.”
Head coach Steve Meehan is delighted with the signing, saying: “Luke Watson is a very talented rugby player and an experienced leader who is yet to reach his peak.
“We are very happy to have him arriving at Bath, even though we may have to wait until November.
“We are certain he will have a huge impact. Our discussions have been very straightforward, and neither of us is in any doubt of the way Bath play their rugby and the responsibilities he will inherit.”
The capture of Watson, who captained Western Province in their game against the British and Irish Lions on 13 June, will be a boost for Bath who have had made the headlines for the wrong reasons so far this summer.
Michael Lipman, Alex Crockett and Andrew Higgins all resigned from the club at the start of June with the Rugby Football Union launching an inquiry into allegations made against the trio.
And in May, Australian lock Justin Harrison requested an early release from his contract following an alleged incident during the club’s end-of-season party.Tweet