Dan Biggar to shun France and remain at Ospreys
Fly-half to turn down Racing Métro for second time when his contract expires next summer
Saturday 17 November 2012
Dan Biggar has told Ospreys he wants to stay with the Welsh province and is not joining the player-drain to France, where his international team-mates Gethin Jenkins, Mike Phillips, James Hook and Luke Charteris have all moved recently.
The Wales fly-half was due to start against Samoa last night, but the build-up to the autumn internationals has been overshadowed by speculation linking him to a move across the English Channel.
Biggar's Ospreys contract runs out at the end of the season and last summer he turned down a move to Racing Métro, where Dan Lydiate is also said to be heading, despite the fact the forward is currently nursing a broken ankle. Racing are bankrolled by their president, Jacky Lorenzetti, and are currently building a 25,000-seater stadium. And with Jamie Roberts confirming he will leave Cardiff Blues at the end of the season – to go to Racing – Biggar was expected to announce a similar move.
But the 23-year-old wants to stay with the Ospreys, where he believes he can become a fixture in the team. "I'm hoping to sort things out with the Ospreys sooner rather than later," he said. "That's my aim. I want to be staying here and I want to be playing week in, week out. As long as things are sorted quickly enough, that's the bottom line. Hopefully we can do that."
Biggar's Ospreys and Wales team mate Adam Jones looks set to miss his club's Heineken Cup double-header against Toulouse next month.
Jones was ruled out of Wales' current autumn Test campaign due to a knee injury. And while his rehabilitation is going according to plan, it appears unlikely that he will play again before Christmas. With Jones sidelined, his Ospreys front-row colleague Aaron Jarvis made an impressive Test debut against Argentina last weekend.
Ospreys physiotherapist Chris Towers said: "Although Adam remains unavailable due to the knee injury he re-aggravated in the Leicester match [last month], we are happy with the progress he is making in his rehab.
"In line with the initial rehab plan, he still requires a further six weeks to get him back to the condition required to reach a position where he will be able to return to playing."
The Ospreys were dealt another major injury blow earlier this week when their Wales lock Alun Wyn Jones suffered a serious shoulder problem.
Jones damaged it during the 26-12 Pumas defeat and was due to undergo surgery this week.
He faces a lay-off of 12 to 16 weeks, meaning he is likely to sit out at least part of Wales' Six Nations title defence, which starts against Ireland in Cardiff on 2 February next year.
And Towers also confirmed his tighthead prop Joe Rees will be out for a "lengthy period of time" and may require surgery on a neck injury sustained against Gloucester last week.
Towers said: "We've had Joe scanned and initial discussions, given the nature of his injury, is that he is going to be unavailable for a lengthy period of time and is likely to require surgery."
London Irish have announced a two-year deal for their goalkicking back Tom Homer. The London Irish academy product, 22, amassed 321 points last season, including 278 in the Aviva Premiership that made him the league's top scorer and golden boot award winner.
The Rugby Football Union has announced it will stream live coverage of England's remaining autumn internationals on YouTube to 28 countries. England tackle Australia at Twickenham today and then face South Africa and world champions New Zealand over the next two weekends.
In a first for international rugby, the matches will be streamed in markets outside the United Kingdom that currently do not broadcast the games, including Spain, Sweden and Portugal.
The former Fiji and Toulouse wing Maleli Kunavore died in hospital on Thursday, aged 29, the Fiji Rugby Union has announced.
Kunavore, who retired in 2010 after he suffered two major injuries to his arm and underwent a cardiac operation, was part of the Fiji side that reached the quarter-finals of the 2007 Rugby World Cup in France. The cause of death was undisclosed but it was confirmed he died in Suva Private Hospital.
Fiji Rugby Union's development manager Sale Sorovaki said in a statement: "It is so sad to lose a fellow rugby player and at such a young age. Kunavore was a very gifted and talented player and our thoughts and prayers go out to his family, may he rest in peace."
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