Bakkies: ‘This season will be my last’

Bakkies Botha has confirmed that the coming season will be his last with Toulon and that he is hoping to finish his career at the 2015 World Cup.

Botha has helped Toulon win two European Cup titles in the past two seasons, and the Top 14 title in 2013-14. He rejoined the Boks in November 2013, and coach Heyneke Meyer has said that the veteran lock is in his plans for the 2015 World Cup in England.

Toulon want Botha to stay on after the World Cup, but the 35-year-old has turned their offer down.

'I've already made up my mind,' Botha told 'This will be my last season as a Toulon player. That will be the end of Bakkies Botha.

'My career has been given a new challenge in France, which is refreshing. I've had the opportunity to train and learn from world-class players, like Jonny Wilkinson, Matt Giteau and Carl Hayman. It's amazing to see their strong work ethic at training. It inspires me to put in hard work.'

Botha said it would be great to end his career with another World Cup winners' medal. Botha was part of the side that lifted the Webb Ellis Cup in 2007.

“It's always an honour being part of the Springbok squad. In saying that, I don't want to be in the way of the younger players. There are talented young locks in South Africa, like Eben Etzebeth and Lood de Jager, who proved himself against Wales and Scotland. If it's meant to be, it will happen.'

Photo: Rory Keohane/HSM Images

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Jon Cardinelli