Champion Wallabies backrower David Pocock is saddened by the culling of the Super Rugby franchise that gave him his big break but hopes WA will continue supplying players at that level.
Pocock recently returned from his 2017 sabbatical during which he visited his birth county of Zimbabwe and played in Japan under his first Wallabies coach Robbie Deans.
The Brumbies star hopes to resume running in the next couple of weeks after undergoing knee surgery.
"Hopefully I won't miss too much of Super (Rugby), the goal is to get back as soon as I can," Pocock said on Friday.
Pocock played his first seven seasons and 69 Super Rugby games with the Western Force from 2006-12.
He said he'd spoken to quite a few of his former Force colleagues, who had to look elsewhere to play, after the franchise was cut from Super Rugby following last season.
"Obviously as someone who played with the Force, (it was) really tough news to take," Pocock said.
"As a player, that's not in your hands. People are making decisions based on information that we're not across and you've got to move on.
"A lot of (former Force) guys are making their new home in Melbourne, (the Brumbies) have got a couple of great signings (from the Force.)."
"Hopefully the pathways in WA are still alive and we still see more players stepping into Super Rugby."
Pocook was looking forward to again playing with Brumbies and Wallabies playmaker Christian Lealiifano, who has recovered from leukaemia.
"There's often not too many fairytale endings in life, we're both back at the Brumbies something we talked about a lot," Pocock said.
He enjoyed his sabbatical but said the concept might not suit every player.
In Japan, Pocock continued to add aspects to his game under the tutelage of old mentor and New Zealander Deans.
"The way they played I was a little bit wider in attack, in an outside channel which I enjoyed," Pocock said.
Australian Associated Press