Wales fly-half Biggar leaves Northampton to join Toulon

Wales fly-half Dan Biggar has joined French side Toulon from English Premiership outfit Northampton with immediate effect, the Top 14 club announced on Friday.

Toulon said the 33-year-old, who is currently injured, would be available at the end of the international window.

Northampton announced last month that Biggar would depart Franklin's Gardens at the end of this season, citing financial constraints as part of the decision, but they have now confirmed he has played his final game for the club.

"We are very proud of the arrival of Dan Biggar in Toulon," said club president Bernard Lemaitre. "He is an exceptional player, who will complete our squad as an outside-half."

Biggar has won more than 100 caps for Wales and represented the British and Irish Lions in all three Tests in South Africa last year.

He captained Wales in last season's Six Nations and on their tour to South Africa in July, which included a first Test victory for the Welsh against the Springboks on South African soil.

But he is currently sidelined with a knee injury and will miss his nation's Autumn Nations Series campaign, which kicks off against New Zealand on Saturday.

"As I said on the initial announcement of my departure, it has been a privilege to play for Northampton Saints and I have loved every minute of my time at the club," said Biggar.

"I know this is a squad which can challenge for major honours this season, so this has been a very difficult decision for me to make."

He added: "I never envisaged leaving Saints midway through the season, but this opportunity came around very quickly, and I made my decision with a long-term view in mind for my family."

Northampton chief executive Mark Darbon said: "Given the circumstances, with Dan's contract ending at the end of the season, his availability for the rest of the current campaign, the multi-year offer to Dan from Toulon which was contingent on him moving immediately, and the quality of the up-and-coming fly-halves already at the club, we wanted to be pragmatic when Dan approached us."

bur-jw/jc