Australian youngster Perese signs for Bayonne despite drugs charge


Bayonne (France) (AFP)

Australian back Izaia Perese signed for French Top 14 club Bayonne on Saturday, despite being released by rugby league side the Brisbane Broncos over a drugs charge.

The 23-year-old, who can play either as a winger or a centre, was charged on a drugs-related offence earlier this year and saw his contract ripped up by NRL side the Broncos.

Released on bail, he was the beneficiary of a leniency measure allowing him to leave Australia.

Perese previously played for Super Rugby outfit the Queensland Reds, scoring four tries in 17 appearances and attracting the attention of then-Australia coach Michael Cheika.

He is expected to arrive in France in July.

The French Top 14 season was ended prematurely due to the coronavirus pandemic, with the 2020-21 campaign due to get under way in September.