Ulster have announced the signing of South Africa Test fly-half Ruan Pienaar on a two-year contract.
Pienaar, a member of the Springboks' victorious 2007 World Cup squad, has won 36 caps. He is due to start in South Africa's Millennium Stadium clash against Wales next week.
Ulster say negotiations for Pienaar's release are ongoing with his South African provincial side The Sharks.
Ulster's operations director David Humphreys said: ‘Bringing Ruan to Ulster is a massive statement of our ambition to be competing with the top teams in the Magners League and European Rugby Cup.
‘He is one of the most naturally-gifted players in world rugby, and having had huge experience at international level with the Springboks, we believe Ruan will help Ulster achieve success over the next couple of seasons.’