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Ospreys

Ospreys snap up Wales U20 flanker

09th July 2014 09:37

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Ospreys shirt logo 2013

New signing: Ospreys

The Ospreys have announced the signing of highly-rated blindside flanker Olly Cracknell on a three-year deal.

Cracknell, who started every game for Wales at the recent Junior World Championship in New Zealand, has penned his first pro contract which runs until the end of the 2016/17 season after the Ospreys beat off considerable competition to secure his services.

The 20-year old arrives at the Liberty Stadium via a personal journey that has taken him from Leeds where he was born to South Africa and North Wales.

Having been a part of the Leeds Carnegie Academy as a teenager he toured South Africa with Leeds Grammar School in 2012, playing five games, after which he was invited to spend 2013 with the Border Bulldogs Academy in East London where he played for the Currie Cup outfit's U19 team.

Welsh qualified through his grandfather, on his return to the UK in December he was invited to North Wales to sign for RGC in Colwyn Bay, where he caught the eye in the Swalec Championship. Just three months later he was called into the Welsh U20 squad for the first time as he made his international debut against Scotland in March.

At 1.91m tall and weighing 110kg, his physicality and work rate saw him quickly establish himself as first choice in the number six shirt for the national age-grade team and he started all five games for Wales last month.

"This is awesome for me personally, to have the opportunity to be a part of the Ospreys is unbelievable," said Cracknell after signing for the region.

"First and foremost now I have to work hard to keep developing, make a good impression on the coaches and then push myself into consideration. If I'm given the opportunity to play I'll need to make sure I take it.

"Hopefully I'll add something different to the mix and the coaches will like what they see of me but I realise there are quality players and internationals in my position so I know what the challenge in front of me is. It's an exciting opportunity.

"I've been all over the world playing rugby already, but I'm looking forward to making Swansea my home for at least the next three years and I'm really keen to get started.

"The U20 experience has been great for me, especially to play at that standard of rugby. There were six Ospreys boys in the squad as well so that will help me as there'll be some familiar faces in the environment. My first day can't come soon enough."

  • Ospreys Fixtures
Forthcoming Fixtures
FixtureDetails
All times are local
European Rugby Champions Cup
Sunday , October 19
Ospreys vs Benetton Treviso13:00
Saturday , October 25
Northampton vs Ospreys17:15
Saturday , December 6
Ospreys vs Racing Metro 92TBC
Saturday , December 13
Racing Metro 92 vs OspreysTBC
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LV= Cup
Saturday , November 1
Ospreys vs Newport Gwent D'gons15:00
Saturday , November 8
Ospreys vs Saracens15:00
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Guinness PRO12
Friday , October 3
Zebre vs Ospreys19:35
Sunday , October 12
Ospreys vs Cardiff Blues16:00
Friday , October 31
Ospreys vs Connacht19:35
Friday , November 21
Ulster vs Ospreys19:35
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Recent Results
FixtureDetails
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Guinness PRO12
Saturday , September 27
Munster 14 - 19 OspreysMunster vs Ospreys Report
Sunday , September 21
Ospreys 62 - 13 EdinburghOspreys vs Edinburgh Report
Friday , September 12
Newport Gwent D'gons 15 - 17 Ospreys
Friday , September 5
Ospreys 44 - 13 Benetton Treviso
More Guinness PRO12 results
  • Table
Pool 1
European Rugby Champions Cup Table
PosTeamPPts
1Leinster622
2Northampton617
3Castres69
4Ospreys65