George Smith in action for Suntory Sungoliath against
Kobelco Steelers in Tokyo in January. Photo Getty
Former Wallabies flanker George Smith, who led
Tokyo-based Suntory Sungoliath to their fifth All-Japan title
recently, is set to return to Super Rugby after agreeing to a
short-term contract with his former club ACT Brumbies.
Smith debuted for the Brumbies in 2000 and notched 128 caps
before heading overseas in 2010 after retiring from
international rugby. He returns to Canberra after stints with
French clubs Toulon in 2010 and Stade Francais last year.
The 32-year-old, one of Australia's finest loose forwards in
a glittering 110-cap career, will start training with the
Canberra-based side next week and could be considered for
selection for their home game against the New South Wales
Waratahs on March 9.
"It's exciting news for the club that we have been able to
bring George back to Canberra," Brumbies coach Jake White
said in a statement on the team's website on Monday.
"He's achieved a great deal in the game and was an important
part of the team for many years, so naturally everyone at the
Brumbies will be pleased to have him back.
"George's record and ability to win games is outstanding. The
guy has won Super Rugby championships, he's won big games for
the Wallabies and he's played in a rugby World Cup final so I
want him to bring that winning culture back here to the
Smith, who played his first Australia test in 2001 against
France, bolsters an already formidable back row at the
Brumbies alongside fellow Wallabies flanker and new recruit
"Everyone wants to play alongside George Smith ... He's
playing some very good rugby," Pocock told reporters in
Sydney on Monday.
"You can always learn off George. Apart from the on-field
stuff, off the field he's a great guy to have around as
The Brumbies are top of the table in the 15-team southern
hemisphere provincial championship after winning their first