clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Former England rugby international James Haskell joins Bellator as a heavyweight

New, 21 comments

Retired rugby star James Haskell has made a big career change, signing with Bellator to compete at heavyweight.

England v Ireland - NatWest Six Nations Photo by David Rogers - RFU/The RFU Collection via Getty Imagesges

Three months after announcing his retirement from professional rugby, James Haskell has made a career switch over to MMA. Listed at 6’4” and 260 lbs, the former England international player has signing a contract with Bellator, where he will compete in the heavyweight division.

Bellator announced the news on social media Thursday. Haskell has never fought in MMA before as an amateur or professional. The promotion expects the newly signed heavyweight to make his debut sometimes next year.

Haskell took to Instagram and said he “could not be more excited” about signing for Bellator. The heavyweight will fight out of London Shootfighters, where flamboyant Bellator welterweight star Michael ‘Venom’ Page also trains.

The 34-year-old enjoyed a 17-year rugby career, competing in two World Cups and winning three Six Nations with England. Spending most of his club career with the Wasps, Haskell signed for Northampton Saints last summer, but injuries plagued his career which led to his retirement from rugby in May.

Bellator will hold a press conference next Wednesday, 28th August, in London to discuss the singing of Haskell.