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Rugby News

Senior Academy sextet agree new deals

Leicester Tigers can confirm it has agreed deals with six members of the club’s Senior Academy.

Sam Edwards, Tim Hoyt, Emeka Ilione, Tom Manz, Archie Vanes and Joe Woodward have all re-signed, committing their futures to the club.

Speaking about the six renewals, Leicester Tigers Interim Head Coach Richard Wigglesworth said: “We are very committed to seeing Leicester Tigers have long-term, sustained success and these six young men are people we see as a big part of the club’s future.”

“We want to develop players who have a great understanding, from a young age, of what it means to represent Leicester Tigers.

“Each of them have shown the commitment and work ethic that we want from players at Leicester Tigers and are developing well through their efforts.

“There is a lot ahead for each of them if they continue to work as hard as they have up until now and we are excited for what is to come in their careers, which we are proud will be here for a while longer.”

Born: June 14, 2002
Position: Scrum-half
Senior debut: November 20, 2021
Senior appearances: 8

Sam Edwards said: “I’m really pleased to be able to extend my time at the club.”

“I feel like I am developing my game well and learning from top quality coaching and the players around me.

“It’s great to be a part of a group where I am competing for a place and improving.

“There’s such a good group of people here at Tigers and it’s a great place to be a part of, a great club to be a part of and I’m proud to do that.”

Born: March 31, 2003
Position: Prop
Senior debut: March 29, 2022
Senior appearances: 1

Tim Hoyt said: “I am happy to stay because I feel like I am developing good relationships with the coaches and learning a lot from them.”

“It is really cool doing it with lads that all came up through the Academy together and hopefully we can keep going together.

“I want to continue to develop now and push on for senior rugby opportunities by working hard.”

Born: March 20, 2002
Position: Back-row
Senior debut: March 29, 2022
Senior appearances: 8

Emeka Ilione said: “I am proud to re-sign and continue to be able to represent Leicester Tigers.”

“My game is improving and I feel like I am in a great place to continue to develop.

“It is a great squad that is working hard together and it’s good that we have a group of us coming through who have been on the journey together for a while.”

Born: July 9, 2001
Position: Lock
Senior debut: September 20, 2022
Senior appearances: 4

Tom Manz said: “I am looking forward to continuing to learn from the coaches at the club and alongside the players in the squad.”

“It’s a pretty special experience training and playing alongside my brother and am enjoying that a lot.

“We have a good group coming through who have worked hard to get this far, together, and I am excited to be able to keep doing that with these lads at Leicester Tigers.”

Born: September 16, 2001
Position: Hooker
Senior debut: November 13, 2021
Senior appearances: 6

Archie Vanes said: “It’s my boyhood club and I am proud to be able to keep representing Leicester Tigers.”

“I want to be in the best environment to keep getting better and I know that this is that place for me.

“The attitude is very much about getting better every day and I enjoy that.

“I think it’s a real positive that there is a group of us who are coming up on the journey together through the ranks of the club and really care about the place.”

Born: September 17, 2003
Position: Centre
Senior debut: March 29, 2022
Senior appearances: 6

Joe Woodward said: “This is the best club to get experience at as a young player with the quality coaches and players around you.”

“The people at Leicester Tigers are really invested in seeing us improve and go far, which is a great feeling.

“I am really proud to represent the club and it’s exciting to be doing it with a group of guys who are so close and are more than teammates after being together through the years.”

“I want to keep learning and improving and build myself into a better player who is deserving of opportunities higher up at the club.”