Sale Sharks caught up with their brand new signing Peter Stringer. Capped 98 times by Ireland, Peter talked about his arrival in the North West, linking up with Danny Cipriani, his continuing appetite for the game and those great games against Munster ten seasons ago.
Speaking about his arrival at Sharks Peter said: "I am delighted to be here and looking forward to living in the area with my wife. I have a lot of friends in the Wigan and Warrington area including Graeme Close who was the nutritionalist at Munster and lives close by."
Peter knows he has a job on his hands battling for the starting number 9 jersey with Chris Cusiter and England U20 World Cup finalist James Mitchell, "My career started back in 1998 and I have been very fortunate to stay relatively injury free down the years. I still love the game as much as I did when I was a kid and realise that you have to enjoy yourself in every game you play. I eat and train well and am ready to compete for my place and make my debut for Sharks."
Peter spoke about playing alongside Danny Cipriani at half back. He said, "I'm really looking forward to it. I played with Danny for the Barbarians at Twickenham against Australia and he is a top player. He has improved so much down the years. Danny is involved with England at the moment and hopefully he will be selected for the World Cup squad and get some game time."
Its ten years since Peter won the Heineken Cup with Munster, and during that season Munster had two big games against Sale Sharks. What does Peter remember about that special season, "I came on as a replacement in the game at Stockport when Munster lost but started the game at Thomond Park on a cold January evening. Munster needed a bonus point win to secure top spot and got it with a try deep into stoppage time.
"We had so much self belief going into that game against a strong Sale Sharks side, coached by Philippe Saint Andre. The Sharks had won the European Challenge Cup the previous season and were a tough well organised team. I managed to score in the final and that was good for me and the team after the heartbreak of losing to Leicester a few years before."
Peter takes pride in his 98 Ireland caps and three Triple Crowns. He said, "I'm very proud to have played with a lot of fantastic players. My job was helped because I was playing behind some great forwards. We went close to the Grand Slam but couldn't quite manage it but those years and caps are very special to me."
He shared an incredible partnership with Ronan O'Gara and recalls, "Ronan and I played together from being under eights, right the way through to the Munster first team and we made our International debuts together. We grew up together too and to win the Heineken Cup and win the Triple Crown for the first time since 1985 was incredible."
Reflecting on his time at Bath Peter said, "I loved my time at The Rec, I had two and a half seasons there and joined them because I wasn't getting, in my view, enough game time. They are a young side and my only disappointment was to finish on the losing side in the final against Saracens."
To watch Peter and the Sharks next season, why not get yourself a Sale Sharks season ticket? This includes tickets to all the Aviva Premiership games, three European Rugby Challenge Cup games plus the two Kings of the North fixtures. Contact Paddy/Olly on 0161 667 7512/7519 or email firstname.lastname@example.org with your name and number for a call back.