Kurtley Beale: Wasps marquee signing will 'enjoy' pressure

Wasps' new signing Kurtley Beale
Kurtley Beale is one of the best paid overseas signings in Premiership history

Wasps' Kurtley Beale says he will enjoy the pressure of being one of the highest-profile signings in Premiership history.

Beale, who has 60 caps for Australia, has moved to the Ricoh Arena from Sydney-based franchise the Waratahs.

The full-back hopes to justify his reputation and salary when he returns from a knee injury later this year.

"Obviously there is going to be a little bit of expectation and pressure," Beale, 27, said.

"But I don't think it will be a huge problem for me because I really enjoy it when the pressure is on.

"If I get my leg right then I will be able to do my job and do it well," he told BBC Radio 5 live.

"It's pretty frustrating coming in injured - not being able to do the things I am meant to do - but I guess when the opportunity comes I will be fighting fit and ready to go."

Beale, who is expected to be fit by November or December, is one of Wasps' marquee players, with his salary - in excess of £500,000 a year - falling outside the salary cap.

But he denies money was the prime motivating factor behind the move to the northern hemisphere.

"A lot of people can say that, but it's a combination of things," said Beale, who has Test caps playing at full-back, wing, centre and fly-half.

"For myself and my partner it's just a great opportunity to experience a new culture, meet some great people and hopefully make some lifelong friendships.

"It's an opportunity to challenge myself against some of the best in the world, and an opportunity to play with a great club who have a great tradition.

"That's the great thing about rugby, you are able to play all over the world, experience some different cultures and meet some fantastic people," he added. "It's all part of the journey."

Beale's career has been affected by off-the-field disciplinary issues in the past, but he says he has matured considerably over the last few years.

"The past is the past, and I felt like I have definitely grown up," Beale said. "No-one is perfect but I feel like I have definitely changed a lot, so I feel like I'm in a really good position at the moment."

And Beale says his main focus in England will be to win trophies with Wasps, with Dai Young's side looking to improve on last season, when they reached two semi-finals."We want to win silverware, plain and simple," he said. "There is no other reason why you want to play the game other than to be successful.

"The boys have been fantastic in welcoming me and helping me settle in. I'm just really looking forward to a big season ahead."

Hear more from Kurtley Beale on BBC Radio 5 live from 19.30 BST on Tuesday, 30 August.

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