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IRFU confirm Robbie Henshaw's move from Connacht to Leinster

The Ireland centre has signed a three-year deal with the IRFU.

THE IRFU HAS confirmed that Robbie Henshaw will join Leinster on a three-year contract this summer.

Ireland’s Jonathan Sexton and Robbie Henshaw Henshaw will link up with Ireland teammate Johnny Sexton at Leinster next season. Source: Inpho/Billy Stickland

Henshaw has progressed onto a national IRFU contract for the first time and his new central deal will run until after the 2019 Rugby World Cup.

The 22-year-old had the option of staying in Connacht on his new IRFU deal, or indeed could have joined Munster, but has instead decided to move east next season.

Henshaw is a product of the Connacht academy and has developed into a vital member of Pat Lam’s senior squad, but will leave at the end of the current campaign.

Henshaw’s capture is a major one for Leinster, whose fans will be excited at the prospect of the centre lining out alongside Johnny Sexton and Garry Ringrose. However, many Connacht supporters will be bitterly disappointed at losing Henshaw.

Commenting on the transfer, IRFU performance director David Nucifora said:

“I am disappointed for Connacht that Robbie has decided to leave but pleased for Irish rugby that he has committed to a further three years. I know that the decision Robbie has taken to move from Connacht is not one he has taken lightly.”

For his part, Henshaw thanked Connacht again and stated his excitement about moving to Leinster.

“I would like to thank Connacht Rugby, the IRFU and Leinster for allowing me time to consider my future,” said Henshaw in the IRFU’s press release. “This has been a long and difficult process and while I am sorry to be leaving Connacht I look forward to the next chapter of my rugby career at Leinster.

“The support I have enjoyed from the fans in the Sportsground and throughout the province is something that I really value and I want to thank them for four great years.”

Finally, Leinster head coach Leo Cullen expressed his pleasure at signing the Ireland international.

“We are delighted to have secured Robbie’s signature for the next three seasons. Robbie is a huge talent and we have all seen that over the last few weeks and months with Ireland in the RBS 6 Nations and during the World Cup.

“We look forward to welcoming him into Leinster when this season is over and I am sure that our supporters would echo that view.”

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Murray Kinsella

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