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Bath eyeing 50-cap All Black to replace Rhys Priestland? - reports

Rhys Priestland

Bath are targetting a former All Black to replace Rhys Priestland – according to reports.

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Earlier this month Bath revealed that Priestland would leave the club at the end of the current season, and they currently searching for a replacement.

According to The Rugby Paper, Cruden is in their sights as the possibility of signing Handre Pollard appears to be looking less likely.

Cruden (RPI 70) is currently the 15th ranked flyhalf in the Top 14 by the RugbyPass Index.

The club is on a major recruitment drive, raiding Premiership rivals for three players and signing another from local rivals Cornish Pirates – all four are English-qualified. Lewis Boyce, Christian Judge, Will Stuart and Mike Williams will join the Club ahead of the 2019/20 season.

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Priestland joined the Club in 2015 and has made over 60 appearances for the Blue, Black and White since his arrival from Welsh side Scarlets.

Director of Rugby, Todd Blackadder, said: “Rhys has been an influential figure not only on the field but in his leadership off the field over the last four years.

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“There’s still a lot of rugby to play between now and the end of the season, and I have no doubt he’ll play a key role in the next six months.”

Priestland may be keen on a return to Wales, however the Scarlets don’t look a viable option with Rhys Patchell having a firm hold of the 10 jersey, while the Cardiff Blues have Jarrod Evans and Gareth Anscombe as options at 10.

The Ospreys may be looking for an experienced head in the position following last summer’s departure of Dan Biggar to Northampton, however they’ve invested plenty of time in Sam Davies and he appears to have filled the void, with 23-year-old Luke Price as back-up.

It could mean that the Dragons are the only viable option within Wales for Priestland should he go back to Wales.

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Earlier on Tuesday the Dragons confirmed that fly half Jason Tovey had agreed a contract until the end of the season.

Tovey is the record points scorer for the region, with 981 points in all competitions, with his best return of 215 points coming for the Men of Gwent in season 2013/14.

The 29-year-old – who has made a total of 170 appearances for Dragons – re-joined the region on permit from Cross Keys earlier this season.

He has now signed a contract until the end of the campaign and been registered for the remaining European Challenge Cup games.

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B.J. Spratt 4 hours ago
Jono Gibbes' reaction to France U20s putting 55 points on New Zealand

N.Z. Under 20'‘s concede 7 tries to France Unfortunately New Zealand Rugby has lost over 25% + of players between 12-18 over the last 3-5 years, possibly more. Poor administration and a Shocking Public Perception about the NZRFU has finally caught up with these dinosaurs. 66% of N.Z. Population lives North of Hamilton and 52% of Auckland population are Asian, who would rather play football. Rugby is dying while other Sports are growing. The rules need to change around the collision/tackle but personally I think the absolute “Arrogance and Stupidity” that the NZRFU has demonstrated over the decades, “with their jobs for the boys attitude” has led to their demise. A Professional Players Union that can somehow “Disassociate itself from the “Old men with bad breath and dandruff” that is the NZRFU, will be a huge challenge. Personally I think it’s far too late to recover and rejuvenate interest in Rugby by young players. Rugby is booming in France and that’s the difference. A booming Professional domestic League. NZRFU are “Not fit for purpose” and have no idea about commercial reality My kids generation would rather their kids don’t play Rugby. Very aware of CTE and the NZRFU arrogance and stupidity, in denying its existence. Finally, the NZRFU have managed to cover up ”Numerous serious crimes over the decades, committed by players, coaches and administrators simply because the tentacles of their “Power and Influence” have reached all sectors of New Zealand Society, including the Judiciary, Politicians, Police and Big business. Denying CTE even exists is a “no brainer for them”

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