Former Bristol Bears flyhalf Ian Madigan has thanked the club ahead of his move to Ulster. The Irishman spent three years at Bristol since arriving from Bordeaux in 2017, and saw a monumental change in that space of time.

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Not only did he help guide the club back to the Premiership during his first season, but experienced the complete rebrand of the team from Bristol Rugby into the Bristol Bears. 

The 31-year-old mentioned this change in a message he shared with his followers on social media. 

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“It has been incredible to see the club grow from the Championship to retaining Premiership status and pushing up the league table this season,” Madigan wrote on Instagram.

“I’ve no doubt trophies are on the way soon. That will be what the amazing supporters of the Bears deserve after many years of turmoil it is finally coming good, thank you for sticking with the club.”

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Thanks you Bristol.

A post shared by Ian Madigan (@ian.madigan) on

The 30-cap Ireland international also thanked everyone at Bristol, particularly head coach Pat Lam for giving him the opportunity. 

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Madigan is set to return to the Guinness Pro14, having made over 100 appearances for Leinster at the start of his career.

He will now compete with Billy Burns for the No10 shirt at the Kingspan Stadium, but can play across the back line and will be a useful asset to Dan McFarland when the season continues in August. 

It is hard to disagree with his positive assessment of Bristol as well, as their business over the summer has been defined by the incoming players rather than those leaving.

England tighthead Kyle Sinckler has already arrived at Bristol for the resumption of the Gallagher Premiership next month, and will be joined by Fijian superstar Semi Radradra. 

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The Bears currently sit in third place in the league, and with such an influx of stars, it is a safe prediction by Madigan that “trophies are on the way”. 

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