Wallabies playmaker Bernard Foley has signed a new contract but only to the end of next year’s Rugby World Cup.
A veteran of 64 Tests, 29-year-old Foley has kept his options open beyond that.
While Wallabies coach Michael Cheika expressed confidence that Foley won’t be lost to a rich overseas club contract, he also talked about him leaving a legacy
“I’m very happy that Bernard has signed on but I don’t believe this will be his final year in Australian rugby,” Cheika said. “He has set himself a big challenge by going from year-to-year and I’m sure he’ll meet it.
“I know he wants to play to his absolute potential and lead the current group into what is a big 2019 with the World Cup just around the corner. It’s also really important to him to leave a legacy for the next crop and inspire young Australians to wear the gold jersey.”
Dropped to the bench for three Tests in a rare demotion, Foley made a statement when reinstated as he guided the Wallabies’ stunning second-half comeback to win their Test against Argentina earlier this month.
“I’m really happy to re-sign and now focus on pushing ahead to focus on what’s a really big season next year,” Foley, who will also remain with the NSW Waratahs next year, said.
“The World Cup is obviously a major carrot and I’ve got a lot of belief in this group that if we continue to work hard and focus on improving every day, then we can push deep into the competition.
“I’m fully invested in rugby in Australia, at both a national and International level. I feel there is a bit of unfinished business especially after going close at the last World Cup.”
Foley is the fourth-highest points scorer (593) in Wallabies history and only sits behind Matt Giteau (698 points), Matt Burke (878) and Michael Lynagh (911).