England Fly-Half George Ford[Photo :Leicestermercury.co.uk]
England fly-half George Ford will leave Leicester to join Premiership rivals Sale ahead of the 2022/23 season, the clubs announced on Wednesday.
The 28-year-old, who has won 77 caps for England, has signed a three-year deal at the club, based in the northwest of the country.
“It has been the most difficult decision of my career,” Ford said in a statement from Premiership leaders Leicester.
“I am proud and grateful to represent this great club at Leicester and I will give my all for the rest of my time at Tigers.”
In a separate statement posted on the Sharks’ website, Ford said: “I’m excited about what the future holds — playing rugby in the northwest, representing the club where I am from and helping drive Sale Sharks forward.”
Ford has been a regular under England coach Eddie Jones but was overlooked for the November internationals.
Sharks director of rugby Alex Sanderson said: “George Ford is world class one of the very best fly-halves in the game over the past five years.
“This season he’s probably playing the best rugby of his career, so we’re getting him at the right time.”