Prop Joel Ringer, son of ex-Wales flanker Paul, to join Toulon

Joel Ringer
Joel Ringer in action for the Cardiff Blues' academy

Teenage Welsh prop Joel Ringer is to join European champions Toulon.

Ringer, 18, is the brother of former Newport Gwent Dragons forward Jamie and son of former Wales flanker Paul.

Having impressed on a week's trial, the former Cardiff Blues youth player will Join Toulon's academy on 1 July.

"I think from the limited opportunity for me in Wales to go and join the best side in the northern hemisphere's academy was just a no-brainer," said Ringer.

After leaving the Blues, Ringer had a spell with the Cardiff and Vale College rugby academy.

Although his brother and father both played in the back row, Ringer is relishing the prospect of making a name for himself as a prop.

"I don't want to be a number seven like my brother or father," he said.

"I love being a tight-head prop. I love the technicalities of it, the scrum.

"So I really want to crack on myself and make my own name."

A number of Welsh players play their club rugby in France's Top 14, with full-back Leigh Halfpenny currently at Toulon.

"To see the likes of Leigh Halfpenny at Toulon now and from what I understand he's settled in very nicely and is enjoying life at there," added Ringer.

"I think that was a factor as I know I'm not going to be isolated over there.

"I think for me, now I've been given such an opportunity, I wouldn't want to return home any time soon.

"I can see myself there until at least my early to mid-20s. The opportunity to develop out there as a tight head prop, playing in their very competitive academy league week-in, week-out would help me develop and come on leaps and bounds."