Former French international back row Serge Betsen has signed a two-year deal with double Heineken Cup winners London Wasps.
Serge Betsen had officially announced his retirement from international rugby last January and said he would retire completely at the end of the current season.
But Betsen has been coaxed out of retirement by the prospect of playing in the top flight of the English game with former international colleague Raphaël Ibanez.
"The Anglo-Saxon culture fascinates me. It would have perhaps been easier to sign for Toulon or someone else in France, but I wanted to take a risk and discover something different - another language, another style of rugby.
"I have signed for two years with Wasps. Their past speaks for itself.
"This challenge is a great motivation for me, and it is also scary", he told L'Équipe.
"There were two possible situations, either I had to stop everything, or someone had to come up with a challenge as exciting as that of London Wasps." Betsen played for 17 years at Biarritz Olympique, winning a hat-trick of French championships in 2002, 2005 and 2006.
His greatest hour in Europe came in 2006 when he was an integral figure in Biarritz's run to the Heineken Cup final. Sadly for him, his side came up against a Munster side who had a steely determination to claim European glory after two final defeats.
Betsen has earned 63 caps since his debut in 1997 against Italy. Originally from Cameroon, he arrived in France at the age of nine, and later on established himself as one of the best world flankers, with his spectacular, tenacious and fearsome tackling skills.
His last cap for France was in Paris in the 14-9 Rugby World Cup semi-final defeat to England.