Brian Smith, the Director of Rugby of the Aviva Premiership Rugby Football Union club the London Irish has moved to stop another exodus of players from the club at the end of next season by tying down the key members of the squad to improved three year contracts.
The Exiles lost a host of talent at the end of last season when the likes of Nick Kennedy, Adam Thompstone, Dan Bowden and Dylan Armitage all left the club for pastures new after their respective contracts with the club expired.
Moreover, several players from the current squad of The Exiles are also expected to leave the club at the end of the current season when their contracts run out and they become free agents. Just this week, Matt Garvey announced that he will be following in the footsteps of Jonathan Joseph in swapping the London Irish for Bath Rugby while Jamie Gibson is already signed by the Leicester Tigers and Alex Corbisiero is set to join the Northampton Saints.
And although the club has lined up several replacements already, Smith doesn’t want a repeat of the situation next season and has moved to secure the services of the likes of Jamie Hagan, signed from Leinster, Blair Cowan from the Worcester Warriors and Andy Fenby signed from the Scarlets to three year deals while George Skivington and Jebb Sinclair have had their contracts at the club extended to 2016.
According to the boss man at the London Irish Brian Smith, if the club recruits well and has faith in the players recruited, they should give them a year to settle down before expecting big things from them. And if this kind of move works out, then the players will be given a further two-year extension with the club in order to stop the talent drain.