The Crusaders have confirmed the signing of Argentina captain Pablo Matera for the 2022 season after speculation mounted on social media on Friday morning.
Matera will be joining the club ahead of the new iteration of Super Rugby that will be played out between five New Zealand sides, five Australian sides and potentially two Pacific Island teams.
The 27-year-old famously led the Pumas to their first victory over the All Blacks in 2020 when the Tri-Nations was played out in Australia with the Pumas shocking the All Blacks 25-15 in Sydney.
"Pablo is one of the premier loose forwards in World Rugby," Crusaders coach Scott Robertson said in a statement on Friday. "He's a skillful and tenacious player with genuine leadership qualities, who has impressed us with his physicality and work ethic.
"We're really excited about him joining us next season, and sharing his experience with our young loose forward group who are learning their craft."
The length of his contract with the Crusaders has yet to be determined with the club continuing discussions with Matera and his agent.