Wallabies five-eighth Bernard Foley has re-committed to Australian rugby for a further three years after securing a “flexible” contract extension that allows him to also play two seasons in Japan.
The deal locks 25-year-old Foley in with the NSW Waratahs until the end of 2018.
It allows him to play for a Japanese club after this year’s Rugby World Cup and again after next year’s Rugby Championship.
The deal comes after Foley’s Wallabies and Waratahs halves partner Nick Phipps signed a deal in December to stay until the end of 2017.
While Foley will be playing virtually year-round if he takes up the usually-lucrative Japan club options, Waratahs CEO Greg Harris hailed the deal as a positive outcome for the Waratahs and Australian rugby.
“Bernard is an outstanding talent and an integral part of our team,” Harris said.
“It is essential for the Waratahs that we lock away the spine of the team and retaining Bernard, along with Nick Phipps, is a crucial part of this exercise.”
Goal-kicking playmaker Foley was a key figure in the Waratahs maiden Super Rugby title triumph last year.
He and Phipps have also been the first-choice Wallabies halves combination under Waratahs and Australia coach Michael Cheika.