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Leicester open Priestland talks

19th December 2013 10:29

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Interest: Rhys Priestland

Leicester Tigers boss Richard Cockerill has revealed that the club have spoken with Wales fly-half Rhys Priestland's representatives.

The Premiership champions were linked to both Priestland and Gloucester number ten Freddie Burns earlier this month as Toby Flood's contract situation drags on.

Clubs are not allowed to speak directly with players until January 1, but Cockerill admitted contact had been made with Priestland's team over a possible move from the Scarlets at the end of this season.

Leicester's intention has always been to keep Flood at Welford Road, but the England fly-half is assessing his options and has been linked with the Top 14.

"Yes, I have spoken to [Priestland's] representatives," Cockerill told the Leicester Mercury.

"I am sure there are lots of clubs who would like him - and there are rumours of Gloucester - but it's just how it fits in.

"Priestland and Flood are of a similar age and have similar experience.

"Preistland has not got as many caps as Flood but he is a very good player and there are not many fly-halves on the market.

"Burns has clearly not signed for Gloucester yet. We are allowed to speak to their representatives, just not their players.

"We have made our request but Gloucester have all the power at the minute because they are the only ones able to negotiate.

"Then every player has the right to look around in January. If there are two or three players of equal quality, usually the first to the line wins the race.

"Toby needs to make his mind up with regards to what he wants to do.

"Come January 1, if Floody has not come to an agreement with us, we have to look around."

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