The wait is nearly over and to continue our build up ahead of the new PRO14 season, we have profiled every team competing in rugby’s premier professional club competition in Ireland, Italy, Scotland, Wales and South Africa.
Here, we take a look at five of the league’s best signings this summer.
TADHG BEIRNE – SCARLETS TO MUNSTER
The 26-year-old secondrow-cum-backrow is a significant coup for the Limerick side, with his versatility and fitness making him one of the stand-out stars on the British Isles over the last two terms.
Apart from his imposing 6’5 frame, Beirne carries well, tackles effectively and is a serial turnover merchant, with a record breaking 39 turnovers, 17 more than any other player.
JOEY CARBERY – LEINSTER TO MUNSTER
The 22-year-old is another exciting capture for Johann van Graan’s side with his nimble footwork, intelligent game management, accurate passing and place-kicking all at the centre of his vast skillset.
The Irish playmaker made 37 appearances for Leinster during his two years at the club, and was part of their successful double-winning campaign last term.
With the Wold Cup in sight, more game time at No10 will be among Carbery’s key focuses at Thomond Park – a position he was unable to feature at regularly during his tenure at Leinster.
JOHN BARCLAY – SCARLETS TO EDINBURGH
The 31-year-old, who has made 71 appearances for Scotland, returns home after five years at the Welsh region.
Although he is not expected to play until December due to an Achilles injury, Barclay will add real mettle and leadership to an improving side that made the PRO14 quarter-finals last season.
Fifteen wins may have exceeded manager Richard Cockerill’s expectations last term, but with talisman Barclay and out-half Simon Hickey, he has two players who can inspire them to further success.
KYLE GODWIN – BRUMBIES TO CONNACHT
The Australian international looks a real gem of a signing for the Westeners.
At 6’2, the Zimbabwean-born star possesses speed, power, good defence and has the game management skills to unlock the pace of Tiernan O’Halloran and Matt Healy out wide.
With four out of their first six games at home, Connacht have a real chance to gather some early momentum, especially with the acquisition of the talented former Brumbies man.
GEORGE NORTH – NORTHAMPTON TO OSPREYS
The 26-year-old can make the magic happen at the Liberty Stadium but it is unlikely he will feature regularly in the PRO14, especially in the build up to next year’s World Cup.
The two-time British & Irish Lion is one of the most dangerous wingers in world rugby, and is certain to add a real x-factor to an Ospreys side low on confidence and leadership.
Their nine wins last season was their lowest since 2008, and combined with the departures of Rhys Webb and Dan Biggar, the Swansea outfit will be looking towards the inspirational North to help them take flight.