Daily Round Up – 26/01/2021 – Chris Ashton Joins Worcester
Chris Ashton Joins Worcester Warriors
Former England Winger Chris Ashton has made a mid-season switch to Worcester Warriors, after Harlequins agreed to release him from his contract early. Ashton made the move to Quins, after things broke down relationship wise, with his former club Sale Sharks. He never really got going at Quins, but Ashton is eager to hunt down the Premiership’s highest ever try scorer accolade. The Winger/Full Back could be a fantastic signing for Worcester, who possess a young and talented squad, that have often created chances but not finished them. You want chances finished, you want Chris Ashton.
“I would like to thank Harlequins for agreeing to release me early from my contract to be able to join Worcester Warriors,”
“The ability to continue my career in the Gallagher Premiership and play regular rugby means that this move is right for me and my family at this time.”
Marco Bortolami To Take Over At Benetton Next Season
Former Gloucester Rugby and Italy Second Row, Marco Bortolami, is set to take over from Michael Crowley next season, at Benetton Treviso. He is currently the Forwards coach at the side and will be given his shot at the top job.
“It is an honour to have been chosen by the club,”
“I strongly believe in the qualities of the team and its potential.
“But until the end of the season my goal remains to support Crowley and the team.”
Saracens Confirm Two Friendlies With Coventry
Saracens have confirmed two pre-season fixtures against fellow Championship side Coventry, ahead of the upcoming campaign. Saracens will host Warwickshire-based outfit on Saturday 20th February (KO 15H00) at the StoneX Stadium before travelling to Butts Park Arena six days later for a fixture under the lights (Friday 26th February, KO 18H00).
Director of Rugby Mark McCall:
“It was important for the squad to have an extensive run of pre-season fixtures leading into the Championship season, so we’re really pleased to have confirmed two additional fixtures against Coventry in February.
“The two matches, along with the Trailfinders Challenge Cup, are the perfect opportunity to further accelerate the development of our younger players with some competitive game time ahead of the 2020/21 campaign.”
Bath Sign South African Hooker Du Toit
Bath Rugby have signed 27 year old Hooker Jacques Du Toit, from the Toyota Cheetahs. Du Toit arrived in Bath on Sunday and will isolate with his family for 14-days. He will join the rugby programme and meet the squad once these COVID-19 protocols are complete.
Bath Director of Rugby Stuart Hooper:
“We are really pleased to welcome Jacques and his family to Bath Rugby. Jacques came to our attention after some impressive performances in South Africa. After speaking with Jacques and understanding his motivations we concluded that he is exactly the right type of person and player that we want to add to our squad.
“Jacques is a physical forward who is able to use his skills to keep play alive with his handling ability and explosive running. He will fight for a shirt with the Blue, Black and White and adds to our depth in the position.”
Sam Underhill Withdraws From England Squad
Bath Flanker Sam Underhill has withdrawn from the England Six Nations Squad, following a Hip Injury. The Flanker has been a fixture of the England Back Row, for some time now and will be a big loss. The news comes quickly after both Joe Launchbury and Joe Marler, both pulled out of the squad. Underhill has been replaced by Wasps Flanker Jack Willis, which shows the serious strength in depth, that England have in the Back Row department.
Pauk Gustard Swiftly Moves Into New Role
Earlier In this article, we told you of how Marco Bortolami will be stepping up to the top role at Benetton Rugby Treviso. Now the news has broken, that former Harlequins Head Of Rugby Paul Gustard, will be taking over as Defence Coach, at the club. Gustard left Harlequins just six days ago and will be return to a Defence Coach role, which is where he made his name in coaching, with both Saracens and England.
Viliame Mata Signs New Edinburgh Deal
Superstar Fijian Flanker Viliame Mate, has signed a new deal with Edinburgh. The 29 year old has been a revelation, since moving to the Scottish Capital, with his mix of hard running and great offloading skills, being a big positive to this team.
Edinburgh Director Of Rugby Richard Cockerill:
“He’s a devastating, powerful runner in broken field and from the back of the scrum, and has the passing and offloading skills in and before the tackle to bring players around him into the game from nowhere,”
Prop Javan Sebastian Signs New Scarlets Deal
Welsh Prop Javan Sebastian has become the latest Scarlet to sign a new deal, with the club. The 26-year-old tight-head has featured in every Guinness PRO14 match this season and also came off the bench to make his mark in the Heineken Champions Cup victory over Bath in December. Having come through the Scarlets Academy system, Sebastian was capped by Wales at U18s level and has played for Carmarthen Quins in the Welsh Premiership. Following a brief stint with Glasgow Warriors, he is now in his second spell with the Scarlets and his perseverance and hard work around the group has seen him rewarded with a fresh deal for 2021-22 and beyond.
Scarlets Head Coach Glenn Delaney:
“Javan has worked really hard on his game and the fact that he has played in all of our matches this season emphasises the effort he has put in. He is an example to young players of what can be achieved when you are willing to put the work in,”