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Dublin: 11 °C Friday 22 March, 2019
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Springbok back row Coetzee commits his future to Ulster with new three-year deal

The 27-year-old has put his injury nightmare behind him this season.

Coetzee: first-team regular this season.
Coetzee: first-team regular this season.
Image: Gary Carr/INPHO

MARCELL COETZEE HAS signed a three-year contract extension with Ulster Rugby, with head coach Dan McFarland insisting that the best is yet to come from the fit-again Springbok forward.

The 27-year-old has agreed a deal which will keep him at Ravenhill until the end of the 2022 season.

“Marcell has been phenomenal for us this season and it’s a massive boost for us that he has chosen to remain at the club, even with significant interest from other clubs,” McFarland said on Wednesday morning.

“He’s been through some difficult times since he arrived here and I’m delighted that he’s got a good run of games and performed at the level we know he’s capable of.

“At 27 years of age, we believe we are yet to witness some of his best rugby.”

Coetzee, who has 28 South African caps, agreed to join Ulster in early 2016 but suffered an ACL injury before completing the move and ultimately only managed five appearances in his first two seasons with the province.

But he has put that injury nightmare behind him to stake his claim as a first-team regular this season, starting 17 of Ulster’s 20 games and scoring two tries.

“First of all, I want to thank the players, staff and supporters of Ulster Rugby for standing by my side over the past three seasons,” he said.

“It was a really tough mental and physical battle for me with the injuries, but I’m grateful for the support I had during that time and I’m determined to repay the faith shown in me.

“I can’t wait to see what the next three years holds for me and my wife personally, and for the club. We have a young, hungry squad that is clearly moving in the right direction under our coaching team.

“We have a lot of hard work to do, but I know that the entire organisation is focused on delivering success.”

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Niall Kelly

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