Halfpenny continues Welsh exodus as he joins Toulon
British and Irish Lions full-back Leigh Halfpenny has signed for Toulon, with an official announcement expected this afternoon.
The Wales international had been linked with a move from Cardiff Blues to the cash-rich French club for some time, but it has now been confirmed he will join the Heineken Cup holders in the summer. It has previously been reported Halfpenny will earn in the region of £395,000 a year.
Halfpenny will link up with fly-half Jonny Wilkinson, who is expected to extend his career by a further year. Wilkinson said last week he would welcome Halfpenny to the club, although suggested he may not give up goalkicking dutires.
“We would welcome Leigh here and any club would,” said Wilkinson. “It’s about welcoming someone who could add to the team, inspire others and leave a mark.
“That is what the guy has done with other teams and that is the best thing I can say about anyone. Leigh is a fabulous player and is a true professional.
“I saw him before the Cardiff Blues game when I got to the ground and he was already there practising. I love to see that and it shows how precise he is and his attention to detail.
“A world-class player is someone who has the consistency to produce the goods over and over again. If you can deliver every time, then you know you are in the world-class bracket.
“Leigh is one of those players. He also has the ability to read the game and react to what he sees.”
The contracts of several other Welsh players are up at the end of the season, with the futures of Sam Warburton, Alun-Wyn Jones, Adam Jones and Rhys Priestland yet to be confirmed.