Springboks fullback Willie le Roux has signed with a Japanese Top League club, confirming his expected departure from Premiership club Wasps.

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The South African will link with former Springboks coach Jake White at Toyota Verblitz for the 2019-20 season following the Rugby World Cup.

Le Roux has been at Wasps since late 2016 after spending just one season with the Sharks in Durban that year. The 29-year-old helped the Coventry-based club reach the Premiership final in his first season, but they could not overcome Exeter going down 23-20.Wasps reached the semi-finals in his second season, but after a string of high-profile departures before this season, the club has been on a downward trend. Le Roux will join the likes of Danny Cipriani, James Haskell, Elliot Daly, and Nathan Hughes as internationals who have left or will leave the club in the last two seasons.

He is very familiar with the Japan Top League, having previously spent three seasons in Japan with the Canon Eagles from 2015-17. He will join South Africans Reniel Hugo, Jason Jenkins, Carl Wegner, Lionel Cronjé, Clinton Swart and Gio Aplon at the club, while it is understood All Blacks captain Kieran Read is also heading there after the World Cup.

Bill Beaumont issues statement:

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