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'Easy decision': Myler extends for his 21st season as a pro player

By Kim Ekin
(Photo by Brendan Moran/Sportsfile via Getty Images)

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Stephen Myler is set to play his 21st season as a professional rugby player after extending his stay at the Ospreys for another year. It was May 2020 when he was initially snapped up by head coach Toby Booth and terms have now been agreed for him to spend a third year at the Welsh club. 

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An Ospreys statement read: “The Ospreys are delighted to announce fly-half Stephen Myler has extended his stay for another season with the regional rugby franchise. Myler, who signed for the Ospreys in 2020, has signed a one-year contract extension.

“He was head coach Toby Booth’s first player signing and has agreed on a deal to stay for a third season at the Swansea.com Stadium. His new contract will mark his 20th year and his 21st season as a professional rugby player.

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“Myler made his Super League debut in 2003 and switched to rugby union in 2006, playing both a league and union season in one year. His achievement of being a professional rugby player for two decades means he joins an elite band of players, including Brad Thorn, Peter Stringer and Donncha O’Callaghan.

“The fly-half has been widely recognised for his performances during his time with the Ospreys in Wales and has played 26 games, kicked 39 conversions and 48 penalties. Myler has already accumulated 222 points for the Ospreys and has taken his career tally to 3,131 points. He won the Gilbert golden boot award in his first season with the Ospreys for his 86.05 per cent success rate from the kicking tee during the 2020/21 campaign.”

Ex-England fly-half Myler said: “This was an easy decision because I am happy here and feel like I am making a contribution. I’m still healthy and motivated. Being able to make a contribution, have an impact and have the trust of the coaches has been important to me. I’m looking forward to continuing my part in the Ospreys’ journey, building on what we’ve put in place, and seeing where this group can go.”

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Head coach Booth added: “Stephen has added real value since he arrived at the Ospreys, both on and off the field. His experience and leadership qualities have made a real difference to a predominately young squad.”

The soon-to-be 38-year-old Myler had spoken about his longevity in the game in a RugbyPass interview last December. “Having a purpose and being part of a group that is trying to achieve something is a huge one. And personally just the opportunity to compete. I’m competitive by nature – we all are in this industry – so the opportunity to try and win, to try and improve every day and contribute to a team effort is what gets you up and gets you motivated.

“As I have got older the priorities have changed. You certainly can’t go onto a field and kick (in a match) for the first time in the week. There needs to be some work done but it is a lot less than it used to be. This is going back five years now. There was a point where I started only kicking once a week because I had a knee injury at the time at Saints where I was playing through, so I couldn’t really kick more than once because it would put me in a bad spot for the weekend.”

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