Wasps sign up Gopperth

Date published: January 7 2015

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Wasps have confirmed the signing of Jimmy Gopperth from Leinster, with the New Zealand-born fly-half joining the club in time for 2015/16.

Gopperth introduced himself to the Aviva Premiership in 2009 and was a central figure for Newcastle Falcons in the four seasons he was with them, winning back-to-back Premiership Golden Boot awards in 2010 and 2011.

Gopperth joined Leinster in 2013 and has excelled at European level during his two seasons with the three-times European Champions.

Before moving to the Northern Hemisphere, Gopperth played Super Rugby for the Blues and Hurricanes in New Zealand. He has also played for the Junior All Blacks.

“We are delighted to have signed Jimmy Gopperth for next season. Jimmy’s consistency of performance at the highest level is really impressive. He is one of the most accurate kickers in Northern Hemisphere rugby and we also expect him to develop a dangerous attacking partnership in our back line over the next couple of seasons,” said Wasps director of rugby Dai Young.

“I’ve been impressed by our 21 year-old Alex Lozowski, who is coming through well, and Ruaridh Jackson should be back fully fit next season after his ACL injury, so we will continue to have good strength in depth at fly-half.

“Andy Goode’s contract finishes at the end of this season, but we would love to keep him involved with Wasps and have offered him a coaching role at the Club.

“Goodey’s ability to analyse the game is first rate and when you see him around the club it’s easy to appreciate how much he is respected by the players and the coaches. He has won everything there is to win in club rugby and offers so much off the field, as well as on field, to the younger players here.

“Andy has already shown his coaching potential alongside our A team coaches and we would like him to join the senior team. At the moment he is keeping his options open and considering a variety of offers elsewhere, which we fully understand.

“As anyone who has watched Wasps recently will know, Andy has played outstandingly well the past month or so and his performance against London Irish at the Ricoh Arena, breaking the Aviva Premiership points record, was top notch.

“However, when it comes to recruitment you are looking to build for the future and what the club will need in a year or two’s time, and we believe the signing of Gopperth, alongside Jackson and Lozowski, will provide us with dangerous attacking and kicking options for the next few years to help move Wasps to the next level.”

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