Flanker Schalk Burger has signed a two-year contract with Japanese club Suntory Sungoliath but it will not affect his participation in the 2015 Super Rugby season or his ambitions to be part of South Africa's World Cup squad next year.
The Stormers loose forward, who has not played international rugby since 2011 but has been included in the Springbok squad for internationals against Wales and Scotland this month, will play in Japan from August to October and miss the domestic Currie Cup season with provincial side Western Province, who announced the move.
But the 31-year-old will return for the Super Rugby campaign in 2015 as he bids to earn a place at a fourth World Cup tournament.
Other South African players to ply their trade in Japan in recent seasons include scrumhalf Fourie du Preez, wing JP Pietersen and Burger's Stormers team mates, centre Jacques Fourie, lock Andries Bekker and flyhalf Peter Grant.
The most-capped Springbok flank of all time, Burger has played 68 international matches and was part of the Tri-Nations winning teams of 2004 and 2009, as well as playing a pivotal role in South Africa's 2007 Rugby World Cup triumph.