Newcastle Falcons have announced that captain Will Welch has agreed a new two-year contract with the Kingston Park outfit.
A home-grown product of the Falcons academy and RGS Newcastle, Welch made his first team debut in October 2008 against Newport Gwent Dragons in the EDF Energy Cup. He has since gone on to become an integral member of the squad, signing his first professional contract in 2009.
Making a total of 135 appearances to date for the club, Welch’s growing stature saw him take on captaincy duties in season 2013/2014 a position that he has continued to hold.
“Will has been a loyal servant of this club since signing his first contract back in 2009 and I am delighted he has decided to extend his contract at Kingston Park,” said Director of Rugby Dean Richards.
“As a local lad, he is very much part of what we are trying to build here at the club.
“He has a lot of support from the senior players within the group, and has developed well over the past five years at the same time managing the captains responsibilities.”
“He is far more vociferous now than he ever was, far more demanding, and when you couple that with a good rugby brain and his ability to deal with people, you can see why we are pleased he will be here for at least another two years.”
Welch is the second highly rated player to agree new terms with the Falcons, after fellow back rower Mark Wilson agreed a contract extension on the eve of the new season in August 2014.
Speaking about his new deal, Welch said: “It’s my home town club and I am really pleased to get the opportunity to spend another two years here, especially with the way we are building at the minute. I love Newcastle and playing here, with the squad that we have got, backed up with a great coaching team, so hopefully we will be going places”.