Wasps prop Kieran Brookes has been linked with a summer move to France.
The 16-times capped tighthead is in the final months of his deal having joined the Ricoh Arena club from Northampton Saints in 2018.
His name was not among the 15-strong list players who negotiated amended deals in June 2020, with us most recent renewal being announced in March 2019.
The Rugby Paper has today reported that the former England international, who turns 31 in August, has been linked with a move to play for Toulon in the Top 14.
Brookes, who also lists Leicester Tigers and Newcastle Falcons among his former clubs, has made 48 appearances for the Black and Golds and has been the cornerstone of their pack.
The last of his England caps came nearly five years ago arriving as a replacement in England’s Six Nations win over Wales.
That chapter of his career appears over, Brookes recently told the Daily Mail about his contact with Englans boss Eddie Jones. He said: “We’d had a few brutal conversations. He told me how he thought I’d been playing and I respected him for being honest.
“It’s always in the back of my mind, rather than the forefront, because I’ve not been in contact with Eddie, but that doesn’t mean I’m not desperate to play for England again.”
Brookes is by some distance Wasps’ first-choice tighthead prop, with Kiwi Jeff Toomaga-Allen his main challenger. Biyi Alo, the former Saracens and Worcester Warriors powerhouse, is currently out with a wrist injury and Jack Owlett has featured sparingly since joining from Exeter Chiefs in 2019.
He cruelly missed out on the Premiership final due to having to self-isolate due to Covid-19 track and trace procedures.
CoventryLive’s rugby writer Bobby Bridge…
“Wasps do not disclose the length of their player contracts which always makes assessing speculation tricky.
“Brookes has been a rock of consistency for Wasps. For so long, when he wasn’t available, it was a loss that was felt keenly. Although it must be said, Toomaga-Allen and Alo have really stepped up since the resumption of the 2019/20 season.
“Given he turns 31 this year, if Brookes decides to head to France in search of a big contract you can hardly blame him. It’s not like he hasn’t given playing in England his all, not many players have made appearances in the top flight for four different clubs.
“Undoubtedly he would leave a big hole for Wasps to fill.”