Sale Sharks skipper Dan Braid has signed a new one-year contract with an agreement that he will then join the club's coaching team.
The 33-year-old former All Black, who has proved a key figure at Sale ever since joining the club from Auckland Blues in January 2013, will carry on his stellar playing career next season and then become an assistant coach with the Sharks.
Since arriving at Sale, Braid has proved one of the most important signings the club have made in years thanks to his inspirational leadership qualities and ferocious play from blindside flanker.
He was named as part of the Premiership's team of 2013/14 and has carried on that fine form this term and Sale director of rugby Steve Diamond, said retaining Braid's services was a massive coup.
"We are absolutely delighted that Dan has signed on for another season as a player and that he will then will be coming on board as assistant coach", said Diamond.
"He provides a lot of knowledge and has a real presence all around the club. He's still got a year left in him as a player and he's a big leader on the field and its great to know that will then be transposed into our coaching team.
"Dan's settled in really well here ever since arriving and leads by example and he's got all the qualities that you want in a player."
For his part, Braid – whose captaincy and all-round knowledge of the game have been hailed by both Mark Cueto and Danny Cipriani amongst others – said he was delighted to be staying in Manchester, and he said that his first two years at Sale had exceeded all of his expectations.
"Coming to Sale has worked out far better than even I could have imagined," Braid admitted. "When I arrived I was only on a six-month contract and I was playing for my career to be honest.
"I knew what I could offer with my experience but to be here and to be made captain has been great.
"I really enjoy being at the club and its a great place to be involved in and I'm delighted to have signed the new deal to carry on playing and also to know that I'll be involved on the coaching side going forward."