Honda Heat have announced four big-name signings with South African trio Franco Mostert, Matthys Basson, Jean-Luc du Plessis and Blues full-back Matt Duffie all heading to Japan. The announcement comes just hours after the Kobelco Steelers confirmed the signatures of All Blacks Ben Smith and Aaron Cruden.
World Cup winner Mostert, who joins from Gloucester, already has experience of playing in Japan under his belt having represented the Ricoh Black Rams between 2016 and 2018. The 39-cap Springbok has also played for the Lions and Blue Bulls.
Bason joins the Heat from the Bulls while du Plessis, a former South Africa Under-20 international, ends a four-year stay with the Stormers.
“I was impressed by Honda Heat’s ambition to continue to grow,” said Mostert, 29.
“Now I’m really looking forward to joining the team. I have always enjoyed and had a great time in Japan, including winning the World Cup last year.
— Honda HEAT (@hondaheat) July 31, 2020
“I love Japanese culture and people. I look forward to this challenge.”
The news continues the influx of top-class talent to the Japanese Top League.
New Zealand fly-half Beauden Barrett recently signed a one-year deal with Suntory Sungoliath, while South Africa’s Malcolm Marx, England’s George Kruis and Wales’ Hadleigh Parkes are also confirmed to be moving to Japan.
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