Springbok and Stormers wing Aplon looks set to head for France

2014-01-15 00:00

JOHANNESBURG — Springbok and Stormers wing Gio Aplon is set to become the next high-profile South African to head to France after it was revealed he was “close to signing” a contract with French club Grenoble, according to the Supersport.com website.

Reports in the French media say Aplon is set to become the next high-profile signing for the club, who recently completed the transfer of Jonathan Wisniewski from Racing Metro and are on the prowl to sign more big name stars.

The success of clubs such as Toulouse and Toulon in recruiting big name foreigners continues to drive French rugby and it seems Aplon — now 31 and unlikely to be part of Springbok coach Heyneke Meyer’s plans going into next year’s Rugby World Cup — may well leave the Stormers at the end of this year’s Super Rugby season.

According to French newspaper Midi Olympique, the club have revealed that they are “close to signing” not only Aplon, but also All Black midfielder Francis Saili as they look to add more flair and pace to their backline.

Aplon has played in 17 Tests for the Boks, the last being the drawn third Test against England in 2012, but is a crowd favourite at Newlands after his exploits for the Springbok Sevens team, the Stormers and Western Province.

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