Irish star Jackson turns down England move

Wed, 01 Mar 2017 20:25
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NEWS: Ireland's second choice flyhalf Paddy Jackson spurned advances from English Premiership suitors by signing a new two-year contract with his province Ulster.

The 25-year-old - capped 22 times since making his Test debut in 2014 - attracted attention from the likes of Northampton Saints and Bristol after impressing as Johnny Sexton's understudy in the national side.

With previous reserve playmaker Iain Madigan overlooked after joining French outfit Bordeaux-Begles, Jackson has seen more game time and started both of Ireland's opening two Six Nations games against Scotland and Italy - with Sexton sidelined.   

"I'm delighted to be staying on at Ulster for at least another two years; it is such a proud moment for myself and my family," said Jackson, who has 118 appearances to his name since making his debut for Ulster in 2011.

"Every time I pull on the Ulster jersey it is something that I don't want to take for granted and I hope to continue to grow as a player and contribute to this team in a positive way.

"I believe that the pillars for success are in place here at Ulster with a quality squad and management team."

Les Kiss, Ulster's rugby director, said with Jackson's commitment he could start building a team around him.  

"To have Paddy commit to Ulster for a further two seasons is a huge boost," said Kiss.

"He progressed through the academy structures here and has grown into a fantastic player and leader, who commands the respect of the entire squad.

"He is the type of player that we can build the team around and it's important that we have home-grown talent at the forefront of what we're trying to achieve here. His ability and leadership will be critical for us in the future.

"Paddy's form over the past few years has been widely acknowledged and it was no surprise that there was a lot of interest in him from other big European clubs."

Agence France-Presse

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FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Fri, 28 April 2017
Highlanders v Stormers 07h35 Dunedin
Cardiff Blues v Zebre 18h05 Cardiff
Edinburgh v Dragons 18h35 Myreside
Leinster v Glasgow Warriors 18h35 RDS Arena
Newcastle Falcons v Worcester Warriors 19h00 Kingston Park
Sat, 29 April 2017
Chiefs v Sunwolves 07h35 Hamilton
Reds v Waratahs 09h45 Suncorp Stadium
Force v Lions 11h55 Perth
Ospreys v Ulster 14h00 Liberty Stadium
Bath v Gloucester 14h00 Recreation Ground
Exeter Chiefs v Northampton Saints 14h00 Sandy Park
Saracens v Bristol 14h00 Allianz Park
Harlequins v Wasps 14h00 Twickenham Stoop
Leicester Tigers v Sale Sharks 14h00 Welford Road
Cheetahs v Crusaders 15h15 Bloemfontein
Treviso v Munster 17h05 Stadio Monigo
Kings v Rebels 17h30 Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium
Connacht v Scarlets 18h35 Sportsground
Jaguares v Sharks 19h40 Buenos Aires
Sun, 30 April 2017
Brumbies v Blues 06h05 Canberra
RESULT SCORE
Sun, 23 April 2017
Clermont Auvergne v Leinster 27 | 22
Sat, 22 April 2017
Sharks v Rebels 9 | 9
Bulls v Cheetahs 20 | 14
Munster v Saracens 10 | 26
Force v Chiefs 7 | 16
Crusaders v Stormers 57 | 24
Highlanders v Sunwolves 40 | 15
Fri, 21 April 2017
Lions v Jaguares 24 | 21
Waratahs v Kings 24 | 26
Hurricanes v Brumbies 56 | 21
Mon, 17 April 2017
UP-Tuks v Maties 28 | 21
Sun, 16 April 2017
Bristol v Wasps 21 | 36
Northampton Saints v Saracens 25 | 27
Sat, 15 April 2017
Connacht v Leinster 24 | 37
Treviso v Edinburgh 21 | 6
PRO12
MORE LOGS
Team P W D L Pts
Leinster 20 17 0 3 79
Munster 20 17 0 3 76
Scarlets 20 15 0 5 67
Ospreys 20 13 0 7 65
Ulster 20 13 1 6 64
Glasgow Warriors 20 11 0 9 57
Cardiff Blues 20 9 1 10 45
Connacht 20 9 7 11 44
Edinburgh 20 4 0 16 23
Dragons 20 4 0 16 21
Treviso 20 4 0 16 19
Zebre 20 3 0 17 18