The Brumbies have confirmed that centre Tevita Kuridrani will depart the club to join the Western Force for the 2021 season.
Kuridrani joined the Brumbies in 2012 as a winger who was overlooked elsewhere, and quickly became one of the best outside centres in the World, scoring 28 tries in his 135 appearances in Brumbies colours.
A stalwart for the club since making his debut against the Reds in his rookie season, the Fijian-born Wallaby's last outing came in a Grand Final win against Queensland last Saturday, a fitting end to a glittering career in the Capital.
Kuridrani said: “It has been a true honour to play for the Brumbies, a club that gave me a chance to play Super Rugby, and to live out my dreams.”
“Leaving my family in Queensland to come to Canberra was difficult, but I can honestly say it was the best decision I ever made.
“I will cherish the memories I’ve made at this club forever, and I just want to thanks everyone who has made my journey with the Brumbies so special, not least the Canberra community who always made we feel at home here.
“While I’m sad to be leaving the club, I feel the time is right for me in my career to have a fresh challenge and I’m excited for my new opportunity with the Western Force."
Brumbies coach Dan McKellar said: “On behalf of everyone here at the Brumbies, we just want to thank Tevita for everything he’s done at the club over the past nine seasons.”
“He’s been a great servant for the club over the years, all the way to end where he was one of our best against the Reds on Saturday night.
“He did everything in his power to make sure he left the club on a good note, and he’s done that over the years, time and again, stepping up in big moments.
“He’s been a rock for us in that 13 jersey for a long time, his defence and his durability to go with his obvious gifts as a carrier, he’s been a huge part of what the club has achieved during his time here.
“It’s always tough to see a guy who’s contributed so much to the club leave but it’s probably the right time for Tevita to have a fresh start and we wish him all the best for the future.”
Kuridrani says he can’t wait to begin a new chapter in his career and take on the fresh challenges that await him at the Force.
“I’m really excited to be joining the Western Force and being in a new environment,” Kuridrani explained.
“I played with Kyle Godwin at the Brumbies, so I’m looking forward to playing alongside him again.”
Head of rugby Matt Hodgson believes Kuridrani is a massive addition for the club.
“This is a top-class signing that further bolsters our midfield,” Hodgson said.
“He brings a wealth of experience, professionalism and athleticism to the squad. To have made over 60 appearances for the Wallabies and scoring 100 points is no small feat, so to have a player of Kuridrani’s stature at the Western Force is simply fantastic.”
Head coach Tim Sampson echoed Hodgson’s thoughts.
“We are delighted to have secured a player of his calibre for next season,” Sampson said.
“Tevita is a class player and has contributed immensely to Australian rugby over the years. I remember watching him when he first came onto the scene as a youngster in Brisbane and suspected then he was a player who was going to go all the way.
“The discussions I have had with Tevita, he is very excited about moving to Perth, knuckling down and starting fresh at a new club.”