Still water to go under the bridge
The Stormers' Springbok fullback Gio Aplon may be on the wishlist of French Top 14 outfit Grenoble, but his move abroad is not a done deal.
Rob Wagner, Chief Executive Officer of WP Rugby (Pty) Ltd, confirmed to this website that they are aware of talks and offers from teams in several countries - including France - to the 31-year-old star.
However, he said he first has to see the contents of any offer before they will consider releasing him.
EWN Sport, quoting Aplon's agent Hilton Houghton, reported that the player is "on the verge" of completing a move to Grenoble.
His current contract with Western Province and the Stormers runs out in October. According to the report Grenoble want an "early release" to ensure Aplon arrives in time for the start of the 2014/15 French season.
Aplon, capped 17 times by the Springboks, had been previously also been linked with a move to Japan.
"I need to see a contract," Wagner told this website, when asked about the reports of Aplon's pending move.
"I have no knowledge of any deal yet," he said, adding that they may consider an early release.
"We need to see the contents of [the contract]," Wagner said, adding: "What is it about? When do they want him? Now?"
Asked about the statement by Aplon's agent, Houghton, that the deal will be concluded in the "next week or two", the Stormers boss said that might be the case, but they haven't seen anything.
"Let's work on the basis that it still has to be done. I have to see the contents of any release and I have to get the approval of [Stormers coach] Allister [Coetzee]. I think it is premature [to say it is a done deal].
"The next 'one or two weeks' means there is still water to go under the bridge.
"Yes, we are aware that there are other countries also talking to him [Aplon].
"That particular one [Grenoble offer], there is certainly no finalisation."
By Jan de Koning