London - London
Irish have been given a major boost ahead of the 2016/17 season with
the news that Ben Franks has committed his future to the club.
Capped 45 times by the All Blacks, the 32-year-old joined Irish on a
three-year deal from Super Rugby side Hurricanes last summer, and is
itching to help the club bounce back to the Premiership.
Now fighting fit after a three month injury lay-off which saw the
tighthead miss a series of crucial games before returning to first team
affairs for the penultimate Premiership clash at home to Harlequins,
Franks is looking forward to a full pre-season programme.
"Once I’d had a few weeks away to clear my mind, my gut feeling was
not to miss out on an opportunity and I’m here ready to work hard,"
Franks told LITV.
He added: "I’m excited at the prospect of getting a solid pre-season
under my belt mainly because I have not done one for many years. The
last time I did a pre-season was when I was 23 - I’m 32 now and being an
All Black you don’t get the opportunity to do a full summer programme.
"The last two or three weeks before we came back for pre-season, I was just eager to get started."
Delighted that Franks has pinned his colours to the Exiles, Head of
Rugby Operations Glenn Delaney said: "Ben is a world-class player and
his experience in the pack will be vital as we look to make an immediate
return to the Premiership.
"We have a number of exciting young talent coming through the ranks
at present and his experience and knowhow both on and off the field will
"It’s a real statement of intent, and underlines the ambition of the club and the owners."