Sale Sharks have announced the signing of South African international Lodewyk (Lood) de Jager from the Bulls on a three-year deal.
De Jager will arrive in Manchester ahead of the 19/20 Premiership season or, if selected, after the 2019 Rugby World Cup.
The 26-year-old started his career with the Cheetahs and quickly burst into the spotlight after a stellar first season. The 6ft 9in powerhouse went on to make 40 Super Rugby appearances for the Bloemfontein-based franchise and was rewarded for his outstanding form in 2015, winning the prestigious SA Rugby Player of the Year award.
Known in Super Rugby for his superior physical presence, the 125kg second-row was quickly recognised by the Springbok hierarchy as an upcoming talent and was selected for the national side in May 2014, at just 21 years old. The experienced lineout operator has now won a total of 38 caps for South Africa.
In 2016, De Jager made the switch from Bloemfontein to Pretoria, signing for the Bulls ahead of the 2017 Super Rugby season. He has gone on to make 20 appearances for the Bulls and was awarded the captaincy ahead of the 2019 season.
Steve Diamond, Sale Sharks’ director of rugby, said: “I am extremely pleased to secure the services Lood for the 2019/20 season. He is a world class lineout operator with lots of experience at the highest level and offers a huge physical presence around the pitch. Lood’s signing is a statement of intent in our endeavour to become a force in the Premiership and in Europe over the next three years.”
Commenting on the recent announcement, De Jager said: “Firstly, it is a great honour for me to join Sale Sharks, they are a club with great tradition and really high ambitions and they are building something really special. It’s exciting to be a part of and Im looking forward to joining up with the guys in Manchester later in the year.”