George North inks new two-year contract at Ospreys

Planet Rugby

Wales and Ospreys centre George North has signed a two-year contract extension that locks him in to the Welsh Rugby Union and his region until 2023.

North, 29, became the youngest player in international rugby union to reach 100 caps earlier this year but is currently sidelined with a knee injury.

The former Scarlets and Northampton Saints finisher made his Ospreys bow in August 2018 and has appeared in 27 matches, scoring 12 tries.

“I have really enjoyed my first few years here at the Ospreys, so I’m chuffed to be extending my time in Wales,” North said.

“The club are really looking to the future and I’m looking forward to playing my role in helping the club to push on this year.

“It’s an honour to play for Wales and something I never take for granted, my focus now is to get back fit and playing again.”

North hit his century of caps during the Six Nations victory over England in February, appearing 102 times for Wales in total, and also made three Test starts for the Lions in 2013.

He enjoyed a revival last season after being moved to outside centre for the Championship and was a certainty for the Lions tour to South Africa until his ACL ruptured when on provincial duty in April.

Only Shane Williams has scored more tries for Wales than his total of 42 and he has won two Grand Slams, two Six Nations titles and played in three World Cups.

“We’re delighted that George is continuing his career in Wales. He was absolutely integral to our Six Nations win last season,” Wales boss Wayne Pivac said.

“We all know what he has achieved playing on the wing and he has added to that with some world-class performances playing at outside centre for his country.

“He has amassed a huge amount of international experience at a relatively young age and I look forward to working with him in the future.”

Duane Vermeulen on his way to Ulster

Ulster have signed one of the biggest names in world rugby, Duane Vermeulen, who will join the club following the Autumn Tests in November.

Nicknamed the Thor of rugby, the 6ft 4in 18 stone Springbok will pull on the famous white jersey at Kingspan Stadium until 2023.

In 2019, Vermeulen was crowned Player of the Match as South Africa stormed their way to a World Cup final victory, lifting the Webb Ellis trophy.

 

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