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Wales
Priestland signs new Scarlets deal
ESPN Staff
February 18, 2014
Wales fly-half Rhys Priestland will stay at the Scarlets © Getty Images
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Rhys Priestland has spurned offers from England and France to sign a new contract with the Scarlets.

Priestland was heavily linked with a potential switch to either Wasps or Gloucester but he has followed in the footsteps of Scott Williams in extending his stay with the Welsh region. The news will come as a welcome boost for Wales as they are still battling to keep hold of star tight-head Adam Jones.

What happened to Wales' big six?

  • The WRU previously identified six players for central contracts - just one player's future is still uncertain.
  • Adam Jones: Yet to decide where his future lies, has been heavily linked with France
  • Scott Williams: Re-signed with the Scarlets
  • Alun-Wyn Jones: Spurned France to stay with the Ospreys
  • Leigh Halfpenny: Signed a lucrative deal with Toulon
  • Rhys Priestland: Extended his stay with the Scarlets
  • Sam Warburton: Only player to sign a central contract with the WRU

Priestland, who started both of Wales' games in the 2014 Six Nations, is delighted to have his future sorted.

"The Scarlets is where I've developed as a rugby player and have been supported since I first started playing - with some good coaches and experienced senior players helping me in my career," Priestland said. "It's important to me to continue my commitment to a great rugby community, environment and team that I am proud to be a part of.

"We have a very strong team ethic at the Scarlets, we're a tight group. It's good to belong to an environment that means a lot to me as an individual and has a real heritage and tradition as well.

"I'm pleased to have this all decided now, so I can focus on our Six Nations rugby campaign before returning back to the Scarlets for what should be an exciting finish to the league season."

Scarlets boss Simon Easterby added: "Rhys has become one of our most experienced players and has a lot to contribute to the region on and off the field. He's a key figure in our squad, an intelligent rugby player who thinks quickly, reads a game well.

"A lot has been said about how to retain our best players in Wales; and while market forces can be difficult to battle at times, there is another dimension to this discussion and that's about creating a regional rugby environment and culture that engenders loyalty, motivation and drive in players with the support to succeed."

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd

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