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Kearney content with extension after pushing for two-year deal

The decorated fullback hopes his new deal will allow him get to 100 international caps.

Kearney in action against Saracens.
Kearney in action against Saracens.
Image: Gary Carr/INPHO

ROB KEARNEY SAYS there is only a final signature missing from a fresh central contract to extend his stay in Ireland, but he admits he was pushing for a two-year deal.

The Leinster and Ireland fullback was speaking with Off the Ball today and referred to his imminent contract announcement as a ‘nine-month extension’. So he will likely be back in discussions with David Nucifora sooner rather than later to determine where his future lies beyond 2020.

“The offer was on the table two or three months ago, then there were a few things to sort out,” Kearney told Joe Molloy, noting that the business end of the season took precedence over contract negotiations in recent weeks, but that delay allowed room for doubt to grow over where he would play his rugby beyond November.

“My intention was to finish it all off this week and, in the mean time, things got kicked out of proportion.

“You do have to make your case, but I suppose I have been very lucky that I can be a bit factual about it,” said the 33-year-old who is Irish rugby’s most decorated player.

“Part of the sticking point was nine months, versus a two-year contract, so I suppose that is where a little bit of a delay was.

I get a nine-month extension. We’ll take it from there after that.”

He may yet feel the need to play abroad, but for now Kearney is thrilled to further his ambition with Ireland and Leinster.

“The possibility of getting 100 national caps is there in the future potentially. I’ve got all my best friends and my brother (in Leinster), I live in Dublin.

“So if you have to take a hit in your salary then you suck it up. There’s more to it than the financial aspect.”

Gavan Casey is joined by Murray Kinsella and Sean Farrell for a review of the 2018/19 season, and cast an eye forward to next year and the Rugby World Cup in Japan.:

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