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'I'll have to see what's best for my career' - Henshaw addresses talk of Connacht exit

The Ireland centre is ‘not ruling out’ a move to Leinster.

Connacht and Ireland centre Robbie Henshaw.
Connacht and Ireland centre Robbie Henshaw.
Image: Morgan Treacy/INPHO

A MOVE ABROAD isn’t something he’s considering at the moment but Robbie Henshaw admits that he’s still not sure where he’ll be playing his club rugby next season.

Henshaw’s current contract expires at the end of this campaign and there’s been plenty of speculation linking the Ireland centre with a move away from Connacht.

The 22-year-old was quizzed about his plans by Ivan Yates this morning on Newstalk and he said no decision has yet been made regarding his future.

“I have to look at my options and, I suppose, coming up towards Christmas we’ll have to have a look. I can expect it to be an ongoing process,” Henshaw explained.

“At the moment I have to get all my options on the table and then I’ll have to see what’s best for my career. I’m not making any decisions yet at the moment. I’m just waiting until all the options come in and then I’m going to assess what is the best for my career.”

In spite of the prospect of a lucrative contract offer from France, Henshaw is adamant that a move abroad isn’t on the horizon for now:

“I suppose, in terms of the French teams in the Champions Cup, their players are obviously being paid a significant amount of money, but I suppose I’d love to play all my rugby in Ireland at the moment. I’m still quite young so I wouldn’t be thinking of leaving for a while. Further down the line it could be an option but at the moment I don’t think so.”

As for following the lead of players like Sean Cronin and Mike McCarthy by swapping Galway for Dublin, Henshaw said: “I’m not ruling it out at the moment but, yeah, we’ll have to see what happens.”

Henshaw accepts that in spite of Connacht’s excellent start to the season, there are likely to be bigger opportunities elsewhere. Nevertheless, he was keen to point out that the uncertainty surrounding his contract situation won’t have a detrimental impact on his contribution to Connacht’s cause.

“Yeah, absolutely. I’m 100% focused on Connacht for this year and for my contract so we’ll see what happens towards the end of the year, but I’m completely committed and completely focused. But if options do arise I’ll take a look at them and, as I said, I’ll see what’s best for my career.

“We’ll decide then. I’m completely focused on my rugby and Connacht at the moment. All the off-the-pitch stuff is being dealt with by my agent. That’s how it’s going now.”

When asked if a decision in relation to his future will ultimately be down to him or the IRFU, Henshaw said: “We haven’t talked with the IRFU but I’d imagine it’s more my call than theirs because I’m out of contract. But I suppose they could kind of guide you towards where they might want you playing. I’m not fully sure on that.”

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Paul Dollery

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