When David Pocock returns from his sabbatical, Japan will be his first port of call, with the Wallabies star signing a three-year deal to play with the reigning champion Panasonic Wild Knights.
Pocock will join the Wild Knights after this year’s Spring Tour before taking six months off to study in 2017.
Once his break is over, Pocock will return to Panasonic Wild Knights in August 2017 before heading back to Canberra for the 2018 Super Rugby season.
Joining the Wild Knights means Pocock will reunite with former Wallabies coach Robbie Deans who has coached the team to three consecutive titles, as well as flyhalf Berrick Barnes.
“I’m excited about playing for a club like the Panasonic Wild Knights,” Pocock said.
“They have a proud history with a great playing group. I’m really looking forward to working with (head coach) Robbie (Deans) and Berrick (Barnes) again.
“When George Smith came back from Japan in 2012 he had added a few things to his game that we talked about quite a bit, so I’m keen to use the time over there to work on various aspects of my game.
“Playing with the Wild Knights will hopefully give me a chance to practice new skills and experience a different style of rugby.” He said.
With Pocock committed to the Brumbies and Wallabies until the next World Cup, in Japan, the Japanese stint could give him a taste of what’s to come.
Deans said he was thrilled to have Pocock on board as he looks to lead the Panasonic Wild Knights to a fourth-straight Top League title.
“We are delighted that David has chosen Panasonic as a team that can assist him in fulfilling his ambitions in rugby,” he said.
“I have no doubt that he will enjoy the people at the club.
“David has been typically thorough in mapping out his future and we look forward to having him with us over the next few years.”