Catalan Dragons have today confirmed that Willie Tonga will be joining them on a two-year deal from the start of next season.
Currently at Parramatta Eels, the 30-year-old has played State of Origin for Queensland, as well as internationally for the Kangaroos.
He brings real experience to the Dragons squad, having played 179 NRL games and scored 79 tries.
Dragons coach Laurent Frayssinous is delighted at the prospect of working with such a high-quality recruit.
“I’m really satisfied to be able to announce the addition of Willie to our squad for the next two seasons,” said the coach.
“He is a world class player who will add power, pace and skills in our backline who is outstanding this season so far.
“Willie has played at the very highest level in the NRL, in State of Origin and for his Country and he will bring his experience to the the squad.”
The Australian centre or winger has been named in the extended 22-man squad last month for the 2014 State of Origin II.
The three-quarter has eight Queensland State of Origin appearances to his credit, and has scored three tries for the Maroons. He has scored eight tries in 12 caps for Australia.
“Willie Tonga is a marquee signing for us. When a player of Willie’s calibre decides to join us, it’s a strong sign to show everyone our ambition,” said Dragons chief executive Christophe Jouffret.
“Willie has all the qualities we are looking for both on and off the field and his experience will prove invaluable to the young players who are coming through at the club. It is a great opportunity for them to continue their learning under one of the best centres in the game.
“We started the discussions with Willie a long time ago and it has been a pleasure to find an agreement with his agent Isaac Moses with who we have excellent relations.”