London Irish land Court

Mon, 27 Jan 2014 20:13
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Ireland international and British and Irish Lion Tom Court has signed a three-year deal with London Irish.

Ireland international and British and Irish Lion Tom Court has signed a three-year deal with London Irish and will join the club for the 2014/15 season.

The loosehead prop only started playing rugby in 2004 and moved to Ulster in 2006 where he has since gone on to make 143 appearances, scoring 10 tries.

He began his sporting career as a shot putter where he was National University Champion in Australia, the country of his birth, for three years running.

The front row represented the Ireland A side at the 2006 Churchill Cup before he had even played a competitive game for Ulster and only 16 months after first playing Rugby Union.

Court gained the first of his 32 Irish caps in the 2009 Six Nations Championships, when he was part of the Irish Grand Slam-winning side, alongside current Exile, Tomas O'Leary.

He went on to be named in Ireland's World Cup squad in 2011, and played in the Irish 15-6 victory over Australia.

Earlier this year, Court was called up to the British and Irish Lions squad where he played one game against the Melbourne Rebels.

London Irish Director of Rugby, Brian Smith said: "Tom is a current Irish Test player and British and Irish Lion. He's a terrific signing for the club as we look to add steel to the pack.

“With David Paice and Halani Aulika extending their contracts, it means we'll be able to field an all-international class front row next season.”

Commenting on his decision to sign for London Irish, Court said: "I have enjoyed eight fantastic seasons at Ulster and will leave the club with many happy memories.

“London Irish is a new challenge and one I am looking forward to. There is still a lot of work to do for the remainder of this season at Ulster and that will be my immediate focus.”

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