De Klerk leaving Lions for Sale Sharks
NEWS: Springbok scrumhalf Francois de Klerk will be joining Sale Sharks on a three-year deal, the Premiership club confirmed on Monday.
De Klerk, 25, has made 11 appearances for South Africa since his international debut in 2016 and has been described as a world class signing by Sharks' Director of Rugby, Steve Diamond.
"I am made up that Faf [De Klerk] has decided to join us next season," Diamond told salesharks.com, after recently announcing the recruitment of Scotland international Josh Strauss and Jono Ross.
"He is tenacious with a fantastic work rate - he dictates the tempo and direction of the game and I think he will fit in well both with our style of play, and with a young, ambitious squad.
"He's an unbelievable ball carrier, has a solid kicking game and he is exciting around the pitch. He sees the weakness in his opposition and can leverage this to his advantage. He's young but has massive experience and this will be crucial in helping us to build on the foundations we have put in place this year."
De Klerk will step into the shoes of Welsh international scrum alf Mike Phillips, who announced that he will retire at the end of this season, following a year long stint at Sale Sharks.
He joins Sale Sharks from South African Super Rugby team the Lions, after helping the side reach their first ever Super Rugby Final last season.
Diamond said securing de Klerk's signature was largely down to Sale Sharks co-owners Simon Orange and Ged Mason.
"Simon and Ged are intent on making Sale Sharks one of the leading clubs in the Premiership. Faf has the vision to see where the club is heading and wants to be part of it.
"This signing as well as the signings of Josh Strauss and Jono Ross will help us collectively achieve our desire to be a top of the table team. I'm sure there will be a lot of excitement in the AJ Bell Stadium come our first home game of next season."