Sixways Stadium was a hive of activity today as Worcester Warriors announced two new signings and one contract extension, while it was confirmed that another player will be leaving the club at the end of the season.
David Denton is the player who will be plying his trade away from Worcester next season, but the Warriors will welcome two new faces with Wales centre Ashley Beck and Scotland forward Cornell du Preez set to arrive for the 2018-19 campaign.
And there was more good news for Warriors fans with the announcement that back row Marco Mama has signed a new one-year deal with the club.
Warriors snap up Wales centre Beck
Warriors are delighted to confirm the signing of Wales international centre Ashley Beck from Guinness Pro 14 side Ospreys on a two-year deal.
The 27-year-old will make the move to Sixways in the summer to further strengthen Warriors’ exciting backline ahead of the 2018/19 season.
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Beck has played seven times for Wales, having crossed the whitewash on two occasions, with his last appearance coming in 2013.
A product of the Ospreys Academy, Beck has played 131 games for the Welsh region, crossing the tryline 28 times.
Beck also represented Wales at Under 16, 18 and 20 level and counts Aberavon RFC as a former Club.
Beck said: “I’ll forever be thankful to Ospreys for the opportunities I’ve been given but I feel it’s the right time for a new challenge.
“Worcester is a great Club with some fantastic facilities. I’m excited about joining a backline full of pace and energy and look forward to the prospect of playing Premiership Rugby which I believe is the most competitive league in the world.”
Warriors director of rugby Alan Solomons added: “Ashley is a superb player with international experience and will be a real asset to the side.”
Scotland star Du Preez set for Warriors move
Warriors are delighted to announce that Scotland international forward Cornell du Preez will be joining the club ahead of the 2018/19 campaign on a two-year deal.
The giant back row will be reunited with Solomons having so far made six appearances for Scotland, with his most recent in this season’s NatWest 6 Nations against Wales.
The back row made the move to Edinburgh Rugby in 2013 where he has made 96 appearances, scoring 13 tries, and also helped the Scottish side to the European Challenge Cup final in 2015 and also the quarter-finals of the competition last season.
Du Preez previously played for Eastern Province Kings in South Africa where he made 23 appearances and crossed for 11 tries, as well as playing 16 times for the Kings in the 2013 Super Rugby season.
Born in Port Elizabeth, Du Preez also represented the South Africa Under 20s side in 2011.
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He said: “I’m thoroughly excited about reuniting with Alan Solomons and moving to England to play for Warriors.
“I’ve always wanted to test myself in the Premiership and look forward to my next challenge.
“I’d like to thank Edinburgh for the past few years where I’ve really enjoyed my time and will continue to give my all till the end of the season.”
Warriors director of rugby Solomons added: “Cornell is a fantastic player with exceptional skills. His all-round game will be of huge benefit to the team.
“He will also bring a great deal of physicality, power and experience to our forward pack.”
Mama extends Warriors stay
Warriors are delighted to announce that back row Marco Mama has signed a new one-year deal with the Club.
Mama, who has made 28 appearances since making the switch from Bristol Rugby, is yet another first-team player to pen a new deal ahead of the 2018/19 season as director of rugby Solomons looks to build stability and continuity within the squad.
The Nigerian-born forward first arrived at Sixways in August 2015 on loan before securing a permanent deal in 2016.
He made a bright start to life at Warriors, with his first try against Harlequins and being named as the Club’s Player of the Month in January 2016.
As part of his loan deal, Mama returned to Bristol for the end of the 2015/16 campaign and helped the West Country side gain promotion to the Aviva Premiership.
Back at Sixways, the all-action back row was in fine form during the 2016/17 season as he became a regular in Warriors’ Premiership starting line-up but an unfortunate ACL injury has kept the Zimbabwean out for the majority of this campaign.
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Mama, who also represented a Championship XV side which defeated Canada in 2014 at Sixways, said: “I’ve really enjoyed the last three seasons at Sixways and I’m over the moon to be extending my time here.
“I’ve made some lifelong friends and I believe this Club can progress and push its way up the Premiership table.
“It’s been frustrating being out this season with injury, but I’m determined more so than ever to get back out on the field and fight for my place in the team.”
Warriors director of rugby Solomons added: “Marco is a fantastic back row and we’re really pleased that he’s decided to stay. We’re looking forward to having him back fully fit and firing.”
Denton to leave Sixways in summer
Warriors can confirm that David Denton will be leaving the club at the end of the season.
The 28-year-old has made 14 appearances for Warriors since moving to Sixways last summer.
Warriors director of rugby Solomons said: “We’re sorry to see Dents go but that’s the nature of professional sport.
“Dents is a really good bloke. We know he’ll continue to give his all in the Blue and Gold for the rest of the season and we wish him all the best in the future.”
Denton said: “I’ve really enjoyed my short time here and would like to thank the Club and fans for making me feel so welcome and giving me opportunities which have seen me return to the international fray with Scotland.
“I wish Warriors the best of luck in the coming years and will make sure I do the jersey proud till the end of the season.”