London - Australia
second row forward Will Skelton secured a permanent move to English and
European champions Saracens on Tuesday after impressing during a short
stay earlier this season the club announced.
The 24-year-old - capped 18 times by the Wallabies - has put pen to
paper on a two year deal which will see him leave Australian Super
Rugby franchise the NSW Waratahs and join up with Saracens for the
beginning of next season.
"We're absolutely delighted that Will is returning," Saracens director of rugby Mark McCall told the club website.
"In a very short space of time here his contribution to the side was
superb, he showed a real appetite to improve his game and he was very
popular among all the players and staff.
"There's still so much more to come from him, which is incredibly
exciting for us as he is already a proven international player so we're
looking forward to welcoming him back later this year."
Skelton, who played three Premiership games for Saracens in his spell
there earlier this season, admitted the decision to leave Australia and
give up for at least two years any hope of playing for the national
side had been tough.
"I am very excited to be returning to Saracens," Skelton told the club website.
"This time around I am signing a longer-term deal, so it's been a really big decision and one I haven't made lightly.
"It's not easy leaving the Waratahs and the Wallabies - Darryl
Gibson and Michael Cheika have been fantastic for my career so far and I
want to thank them for everything they have done for me, on and off the
"Not being able to pull on the gold jersey while I am playing in
England has made the decision especially difficult, but this is about
family as much as it is football. One day I'd love to play for Australia
again and if that opportunity comes up I will give everything I've got
for my country."
Skelton, first capped in 2014, is Saracens fourth signing for next
season, joining Wales international Liam Williams, Toulouse and France
hooker Christopher Tolofua and Northampton Saints and England flank