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Gloucester statement: Exit of Billy Twelvetrees after 11-year stay

By Liam Heagney
(Photo by David Rogers/Getty Images)

Former England and Lions midfielder Billy Twelvetrees will leave Gloucester at the end of this season after 11 years with the Gallagher Premiership club. Gloucester said that 34-year-old Twelvetrees is to embark on a new challenge. He has made more than 270 appearances for Gloucester since joining them from Leicester. He also won 22 Test caps.

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A statement read: “Billy Twelvetrees is to depart Kingsholm at the end of the season. After over 270 appearances, the club stalwart will embark on a new challenge at the conclusion of the 2022/23 season, bringing an end to his 11-year tenure at Kingsholm.

“The 34-year-old arrived at Gloucester from Leicester in 2012 and has been a key figure in the squad ever since. Twelvetrees earned a call-up to the England squad for the 2013 Six Nations, making his debut against Scotland at Twickenham.

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“The centre toured with England once more with a summer visit to Argentina in 2013, making one appearance before being drafted into Warren Gatland’s British and Irish Lions squad in Australia.

“Quickly becoming a fan favourite at Kingsholm, Twelvetrees was named Gloucester captain ahead of the 2014/15 season, leading the side to a second European Challenge Cup title at the end of that year.

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“Last season, Billy marked an incredible 10 years of service to the club during his testimonial year, a season in which he also notched up his 250th appearance. This season, he has made 16 appearances, including memorable performances against Bordeaux and La Rochelle in the Heineken Champions Cup.”

Speaking ahead of Saturday’s league game at home to Sale, Gloucester boss George Skivington said: “Billy is such a quality individual as a bloke and as a rugby player. I have known him a long time and I have got all the time in the world for him. There is no doubt that he will be considered a club legend for his contribution to this club and this city over the last decade.

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“We are hoping that Saturday will be a good send-off for him. The fans have always been appreciative of Billy’s commitment, and I know that Billy has a huge amount of respect for our supporters too. We’ve obviously got a couple of games to go yet, but when the time comes, Billy leaves with our blessing and support for his next journey.”

Twelvetrees added: “I’m extremely thankful that I have had the opportunity to play for such a prestigious club for the last 11 years and I have loved every minute of it. What makes this club special is the people and the fans.

“From Shaun the kitman, to chef, to Martin and Judith St Quinton who have given me the opportunity to play here for so many years, this club is all about the people. I have made some friends for life and that is why I love rugby so much and I can’t wait for my next chapter in rugby.”

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