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Leinster's Cian Kelleher signs for Ealing Trailfinders

By Ian Cameron

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Promising Irish winger Cian Kelleher has signed for up-and-coming English Championship side Ealing Trailfinders.

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A former Ireland U20s star, Kelleher returned to Leinster from Connacht in 2019 and notched up 18 appearances for the Irish province. The 26-year-old brother of Ireland hooker Ronan Kelleher scored 10 tries in his most recent stint with Leinster, although issues with his hamstrings limited his availability for the European giants and he failed to regularly make the first-team as a result.

“I’d like to thank Leinster Rugby for my time with the club. It’s been enjoyable and particularly getting to play with my brother and best friends once again. They’re memories I’ll cherish,” said Kelleher. “The last year has been strange to say the least and it would have been great to have played in front of the supporters in the RDS Arena one more time, but it’s not meant to be. I would like to thank them all for their support of me during the highs and the lows of my time here and the welcome afforded to me on my return.

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“I’m really excited by the challenge in Ealing Trailfinders and it’s one I’m relishing over in the UK.

“I’m looking forward to linking up with Ben Ward and with Kieran Campbell joining next season as well, it’s a club with really exciting ambitions that I’m thrilled to be a part of.

“I want to finish my time with Leinster in the right manner and then I’ll look to start a new chapter with Ealing which I can’t wait to get started.”

Ealing, who have beaten Saracens twice this season already, having been on a canny recruitment drive in recent seasons. Kelleher will join former Harlequins flyer Charlie Walker and former Ireland U20s and Ulster star Angus Kernahan in what is a potentially lethal Ealing backline.

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Ealing Trailfinders Director of Rugby, Ben Ward, said: “Cian is a very exciting signing for the club, and he will bring a wealth of experience of playing top-level rugby. He has great footwork and the ability to beat defenders which will be exciting to watch especially on our pitch. He had a very successful spell at Connacht before returning to Leinster and I’m delighted that he has brought into the vision and ongoing project at Ealing Trailfinders to sign with us.”

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