Noon and Perry join English exodus to France

Jamie Noon and Shaun Perry became the latest players to join the exodus of top English stars moving to France when it was revealed on Tuesday that they will play for Brive next season.

The Top 14 side announced the signings of the two England internationals alongside the captures of South Africa’s Pat Barnard and Viliame Waqaseduadua, known as Vili, of New Zealand.

Noon, 30, joins fellow England man Jonny Wilkinson in leaving Newcastle for France, with the 2003 World Cup-winning fly-half having signed for Brive’s rivals Toulon on Monday.

Tom May and Ollie Phillips have also left Newcastle to play in France, while Riki Flutey, James Haskell, Tom Palmer and Iain Balshaw have also been tempted to leave England by the cash-rich French league.

Noon, who plays at centre and has won 38 caps for England, has signed a two-year contract at Brive, who finished sixth in France’s top division this season.

Perry, one year Noon’s senior, signs from Bristol and has won 14 caps for England at scrum-half.

Barnard will also be crossing the English Channel, the 28-year-old prop having signed from English Premiership side Wasps.

Vili, 26, is a Fiji-born winger who represented New Zealand at rugby league before going on to play for the Blues, the Highlanders and the Chiefs in Super 14.


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