Harlequins have announced the signing of powerhouse winger Travis Ismaiel from South African Super Rugby side the Bulls.
The 27-year-old winger is a hugely powerful and dominant player who has come through the ranks at the Bulls playing for the Blue Bulls in their U19 and U21 teams before making his First Class debut in 2013 against Griquas.
He scored on his international debut for South Africa in the 2018 friendly against Wales in Washington DC and prior to earning full international honours he also represented South Africa A in their two-match series against England Saxons in 2016.
Harlequins Head of Rugby Paul Gustard commented: “I have been enquiring about Travis for a couple of months now since we lost Nathan to a nasty injury against Saints last season. I was over on holiday in South Africa in the summer with my family and I took the opportunity over a couple of days to meet his agent, speak to Travis and meet some players who knew him and all the feedback I received was that he is such an impressive individual with huge coachability and some real X Factor.
“To be capped in such a competitive position in South Africa allied to boasting a very impressive try scoring record in Super Rugby of almost 1 in 2 is great news for the Club. What isn’t great news for me was I had to buy my wife a new handbag to compensate for lost holiday time!
“I have no doubt he will be a huge presence on the pitch for us with his excellent aerial skills. He is fast and is a big man who enjoys running hard.
“We will look for him to work hard to get his hands on the ball as much as we can because, like all our wings, they have magic in them, and we want them to show the League why they are so special.
“Initially he comes as injury dispensation for Nathan, but we see real potential for growth in Travis, so we have signed him on a longer contract to maximise his development. On behalf of the club we welcome Travis, his wife Zaylin and his children Connor and Kiara.”