Ireland’s Jonathan Sexton will join French side Racing Metro next season after the Irish Rugby Football Union (IRFU) said last night the fly-half would not renew his contract with European champions Leinster.
Sexton, who won three Heineken Cups in four seasons with Leinster and is one of Ireland’s most influential players, has been offered a two-year contract, sources in France said last night. Racing declined to confirm the transfer and cannot make any comment before 21 April as under French rules the signing of a player can only be made public when the league’s transfer window for the season opens. The IRFU said it had made the 27-year-old a very strong offer but that ultimately “it would not be in the best interest of Irish rugby to chase the reported financial incentives being offered”.
SRU extends offer to clubs, schools
SCOTLAND’S RBS Six Nations Championship matches with Ireland and Wales are close to selling out, but the SRU has extended the club and schools ticket offer in a bid to attract a full house for all three home matches.
As part of the encouragement to clubs and schools to help sell tickets, the SRU is offering commission on every ticket sold for all three home games. For the visit of the Azzurri on Saturday 9 February, adult tickets are still available at £30, £40 and £70 with students and under 18s half-price. All tickets bought through a rugby club will earn that club 15 per cent. The commission deal for the Italy game ends next Friday.
For Ireland and Wales a small number of tickets remain and commission is five per cent. Applications should be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org
Wales call-up feels ‘surreal’ to Kohn
OLLY Kohn reflected on the “surreal” feeling of being called up by Wales for this season’s RBS Six Nations Championship. The uncapped Harlequins lock will report for duty tomorrow evening. The 31-year-old was born in Bristol, but qualifies for Wales through his late grandfather, who hailed from the Rhymney Valley. His addition to the squad reflects an area where Wales have been ravaged by injuries. Experienced trio Alun-Wyn Jones (shoulder), Luke Charteris (knee) and Bradley Davies (ankle) are all unavailable, while Ian Evans has been battling to overcome a knee problem in time to face Ireland at the Millennium Stadium next Saturday. Kohn is the third uncapped lock in the Wales squad, joining Ospreys forward James King and Newport Gwent Dragons second-row Andrew Coombs.