Wasps boost forward pack
TRANSFER NEWS: Wasps have strengthened their forward pack with the signing of two props Paul Doran-Jones and David Langley, while loosehead Tom Bristow is confirmed to leave the Premiership side.
Paul Doran-Jones will join Wasps from Gloucester ahead of the 2017/18 season. The 32-year-old prop is able to play on both sides of the scrum and, having spent a short period of time on loan at the club last season, will join on a full-time basis ahead of the new campaign. With six England caps to his name and a wealth of experience both domestically and in Europe, Doran-Jones will add his considerable know-how to the group of props already at the club.
Doran-Jones has history with Wasps, who he helped to win the A League title in 2008, as well as playing against the men in black and gold on numerous occasions for London Welsh, Gloucester, Northampton and Harlequins.
On his signing with Wasps, Paul Doran-Jones said: "After spending some time at the club on loan this year, I’m really looking forward to linking back up with them ahead of the new season. In the time I spent there, I was really impressed with the set-up and have watched with interest as they made it to the Premiership Final and the quarterfinals of Europe.
"There’s a great group of props at the club and I’m looking forward to battling it out with them as well as working under Dai Young. I’m really looking forward to getting started,"
Tighthead prop David Langley will join the club from Cambridge ahead of the 2017/18 season.
The 23-year-old has impressed for Wasps during this season’s A League campaign, which saw them reach the semi finals of the competition, and his performances for the second team have seen him sign a full-time contract with the club ahead of next season.
Langley has risen rapidly through the national leagues, playing for South Woodham Ferrers in 2014, joining Colchester while studying at University before being picked up by Cambridge and impressing with them this season in National League 1.
On his signing with Wasps, David Langley said: "I am super excited to be joining Wasps, it is a massive opportunity for me and I can't wait to get started.
"From a player who hasn't been through the academy system, I owe a great deal to the clubs that have supported me along the way, so thank you to South Woodham, Colchester and Cambridge and it just goes to prove that with enough hard work and dedication, anybody can achieve their dreams. I appreciate that joining a Premiership club means the hard work has only just begun. I am really looking forward to learning from such a talented group of players and to adding to the squad in any way I can next season,"
On the signing of David Langley and Paul Doran-Jones, Director of Rugby Dai Young said:
"We’ve been really impressed with David’s performances for us during this season’s A League campaign and we’re really pleased that he will be with us on a fulltime basis. He’s very physical in his ball carrying and we’ve been impressed with his work rate throughout the campaign and are looking forward to seeing how he can continue to develop as a young prop.
"In Paul’s short time at the club on loan last season, we were really impressed with his physical abilities. We have a good group of props at the club and Paul’s experience will only help them to improve. He fitted into the group well last season and we’re looking forward to having him on board on a full-time basis from the start of next season.
"We have a very talented group of front row forwards at the club, but recognise it is an area we need to expand to have enough cover when injuries strike. We are also still in the market for another experienced prop to bolster our front row resource," he added.
Wasps also confirmed that Tom Bristow will leave the club at the end of the season. Having joined Wasps from Leicester Tigers ahead of the 2015/16 season, Bristow became a popular member of the squad and added to a competitive group of loose-heads including Matt Mullan and Simon McIntyre, making 23 appearances to date over the course of his two seasons in black and gold.
On his leaving at the end of the season, Tom Bristow said: "I’ve enjoyed every minute of my time in black and gold and I’d like to thank everyone at the club for helping me develop as a player and for making it such a good environment to work in.
"There are a great group of guys at the club and to be involved with a team that has battled it out to reach the knockout stages of the European Champions Cup and the Premiership Final has been a brilliant experience,"