Ulster have announced that Stuart Olding has signed a contract extension that will keep him at Kingspan Stadium until the end of 2018/19.
The talented 22-year-old has racked up 39 appearances for Ulster after making his debut in December 2011, against Leinster. He scored his first try for the province in a PRO12 fixture against Glasgow in February 2013, before notching another three in his next six games.
The versatile back made his international bow on the 2013 North American tour, at a time when Les Kiss – now director of rugby at Ulster – was in situ as Ireland head coach on an interim basis. He earned a second cap the following year, against Georgia, and he marked the occasion with his first international try.
Olding, who can operate in several positions across the backline, has overcome two serious knee injuries, the most recent of which came against Cardiff Blues last March.
He announced his return from that setback by clinching a bonus point with a late try in the win over Treviso last month, in what was his first appearance of the season. He has also started in the recent triumphs over Dragons and Glasgow and he played starring roles at inside centre and full-back respectively.
"I'm delighted to be with Ulster for another few years and it's a boost to sign the extension so soon after my return from injury. I've been unfortunate with injuries over the past couple of seasons but the medical staff and management team here at Ulster have been outstanding and they have provided me with phenomenal support during some tough times," said Olding.
"I believe Ulster Rugby is in a really good place at the minute and it's a great organisation to be part of. The set up here at Kingspan Stadium is first class in terms of the facilities, the quality of players we have – and indeed those that we have coming in, the staff, and the supporters. I look forward to contributing to the success of Ulster over the coming months and years."
Ulster director of rugby, Kiss, added: "To have Stuart committing to Ulster Rugby is another huge boost for us. He has worked incredibly hard to come back from injury and he is starting to recapture some of his best form. The determination and character he has shown in returning from his most recent injury speaks volumes for him and he is exactly the type of person we need within the squad.
"He is one of the most talented players that I have ever worked with and he is a superb asset to this organisation. I'm sure that he will have a massive impact for us over the next few years."