Northampton Saints have announced that Ahsee Tuala has signed a contract that will keep him at Franklin’s Gardens.
The 25-year-old joined the club earlier in the year as injury cover in the Saints’ backline. And after making an immediate impact with his try-scoring debut in February’s LV= Cup win over Wasps the full-back has continued to impress, scoring four tries in his eight appearances so far.
Tuala says it was an easy decision to put pen to paper.
"I had no hesitation in signing a contract to stay at the Saints," he said.
"I’ve had a lot of love since I arrived here, both from the rest of the lads, the staff and from the supporters as well. It’s helped me settle here and made me feel really comfortable at Franklin’s Gardens, and I’m looking forward to staying here at the Saints.
"It’s good to have sorted this out before what will be a big few weeks for us, and I can concentrate on doing as well as I can for the team."
Director of rugby Jim Mallinder says that Tuala has been a positive player to have in the club’s squad.
"Ahsee has been a good player to have around the club," he said.
"He has worked hard on every aspect of his game, and has settled in very well with the rest of the squad. He has certainly earned his opportunity to stay here and we’re looking forward to seeing him progress next season."
Two very exciting young players will also be joining the club for next season after recently signing contracts.
21-year-old Sion Bennett joins from the Scarlets. The back rower has played eight times for the Welsh region in the Pro 12, LV= Cup and Champions Cup, as well as representing Wales U20 in the Junior World Championships and Six Nations. His pace and ball skills have been reflected in repeated selections for Wales Sevens on the World Rugby Sevens Series.
Scrum-half Alex Mitchell arrives from Sale, where he has impressed while rising through both the Sharks’ Academy system and England age groups. He is regarded as one of the best young scrum-halves in England, and as well as being a regular in Sale’s Under-18 team that competes in the Premiership Rugby Academies League he was a contender for the 2013/14 Rugby World Schools Team of the Season.
Mallinder added that the pair will add to the competition for places at Franklin’s Gardens.
"We’ve got a lot of talented youngsters coming through our own Academy system, but we always have an eye on what is happening elsewhere, and Sion and Alex are two very good players who we believe have a lot of potential to impress in the years to come," he said.