Henry (centre) will be staying with Ulster for three more years. ©INPHO/Morgan Treacy

Chris Henry extends Ulster contract for three more years

The Ireland international openside flanker will be staying at Ravenhill until 2017.

ULSTER BACK ROW Chris Henry has signed a new three-year deal with the province, meaning he will stay at Ravenhill until at least 2017.

The 29-year-old has been with Ulster for the duration of his professional career, having come through the academy to sign his first senior contract in 2007. Henry has won eight caps for Ireland, most recently against Canada during June’s tour of North America.

The openside flanker has begun this season in strong form, starting six games already, including both Heineken Cup clashes against Leicester and Montpellier. Last weekend, Henry dominated his head-to-head battle with Mamuka Gorgodze of the Top 14 side and helped Ulster to that excellent 25-8 win.

The ex-Wallace High School Pupil first emerged as a No. 8, excelling there for the Ireland U21s too. However, his transition into a top-class openside flanker has been hugely successful, and Henry is also one of the most popular members of the Ulster set-up.

Speaking about his new deal at the province, Henry stressed that international ambitions remain at the forefront of this thoughts.

I am delighted to have committed to Ulster for the long-term. This squad is getting better and better. We have experience, as well as young players coming through who are proving that they can perform at the very highest level.

“It is a great team to be a part of and there is no doubt that when it comes to winning silverware – we have some unfinished business to do.

“From a personal point of view, I want to win more caps for Ireland and my aim is to be part of the World Cup squad in 2015. In my opinion, being at Ulster gives me the best chance to fulfill that ambition.”

Ulster’s Director of Rugby, David Humphreys, also expressed his pleasure at the contract having been finalised, and highlighted Henry’s importance to the Ulster cause.

“Chris has been a cornerstone of our success in recent years. His performance against Montpellier typified what he brings to the Ulster team, namely – commitment, intensity and ferocity at the breakdown.

“It would be hard to find anyone who is more passionate about playing for Ulster than Chris Henry and I am extremely pleased that he will be part of the squad until at least 2017.”

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This try by Montpellier was voted as last season’s best in France