England prop Sheridan moving to France

LONDON (AP) — Sale prop Andrew Sheridan has ended his England career by signing a three-year deal with Toulon starting next season.

Sheridan and the French club have yet to announce the contract, but Sale sporting director Steve Diamond told the Manchester Evening News on Tuesday he was informed by the 32-year-old loosehead.

The English union has begun a new policy, in preparation for hosting the 2015 World Cup, of not picking players outside the country unless for exceptional circumstances.

Sheridan hasn’t played any rugby since September, when he reinjured his left shoulder against Argentina in England’s opening match of the World Cup in New Zealand. Sheridan has had surgeries on both shoulders in his international career since 2004, which spans 42 tests, including two for the 2009 British and Irish Lions.

He’s expected to make his comeback next month for Sale.

“He’s been a loyal member of the club for a long time but he feels that he’s best suited for the next two or three years to try his hand by playing over in France,” Diamond said.

At Toulon, Sheridan will join fellow England caps Jonny Wilkinson, Simon Shaw, Steffon Armitage and Dean Schofield.

Copyright 2012 The Associated Press.

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