Toulon have confirmed the signing of world-class number eight Vermeulen

The Stormers captain will join Mourad Boudjellal’s club on a three-year contract.

TOULON HAVE OFFICIALLY confirmed the signing of South Africa number eight Duane Vermeulen on a three-year contract.

Jonathan Sexton and Rhys Ruddock tackle Duane Vermeulen Vermeulen is a formidable carrier, superb at the breakdown and has good skills. Source: Cathal Noonan/INPHO

The world-class back row will join the triple European champions after this year’s World Cup, adding to the array of quality available to head coach Bernard Laporte next season.

28-year-old Vermeulen has earned 29 caps for the Springboks since making his debut in 2012 and enjoyed superb seasons on the international stage in both 2013 and 2014.

The Stormers captain was part of the five-man shortlist for last year’s IRB [now World Rugby] World Player of the Year award alongside Ireland’s Johnny Sexton and eventual winner Brodie Retallick.

With Steffon Armitage, Juan Martín Fernández Lobbe, Juan Smith, Charles Ollivon, Mamuka Gorgodze and Virgile Bruni also in their squad, Toulon now have an armada of back-row quality.

Impressive 36-year-old flanker Gerhard Vosloo is also part of Laporte’s squad, although he is set to leave the club at the conclusion of the World Cup as some of those star names return from international duty.

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Vermeulen was unveiled to the media by Toulon this morning at Stade Mayol before he returns home to join South Africa’s preparations for the Rugby Championship, which gets underway next month.

Toulon are expected to officially unveil Ireland captain Paul O’Connell in the coming week.

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Murray Kinsella

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