Marty Holah has made a huge impact since arriving at the Liberty Stadium 13 months ago.
Former All-Black flanker Marty Holah has agreed to extend his stay in south Wales, signing a new one year contract which will see him remain at the Liberty Stadium until the end of the 2009/10 season.
The 32-year-old Holah arrived at the region in November 2007 on a deal which ran until the end of this season, with an option to extend for a further 12 months, making his debut against London Irish in an EDF Energy Cup fixture at the Liberty Stadium just four days after touching down in Ospreylia.
Renowned for his high work rate and his ability to steal the ball in the tackle, the vastly experienced Holah has made a huge impact in an Ospreys shirt over the last 13 months, making 29 appearances to date and scoring one try against Connacht. Possibly his finest 80 minutes came in the outstanding victory over Leicester Tigers in the EDF Energy Cup Final at Twickenham in April, where he picked up the Man of the Match award as the Ospreys destroyed the Guinness Premiership giants.
He has proved just as influential off the field, with his willingness to work with his team-mates to assist in their personal development, passing on the knowledge and experience gained at the highest level to the likes of fellow opensides Ben Lewis and Steve Tandy.
Speaking after signing his contract today, Marty Holah commented: "When I first signed for the Ospreys, it was the ambition and desire to be the best that attracted me to the region as I wanted to be involved with a team that competed at the highest level. In my first 12 months or so as an Osprey, we've made the knockout stages of the Heineken Cup and won the EDF Energy Cup, and this time around, we're well in contention in all three competitions so it's clear that we're heading in the right direction.
"The culture and environment that is in place here at the Ospreys is geared up for success and I'm really enjoying being a part of it, so the decision to agree to the extra year was an easy one. We've got some big games coming up over the next few months that will really shape our season, and I'm looking forward to helping bring long-term success to the region."
Ospreys Forwards Coach Jonathan Humphreys said: "We are delighted that Marty has agreed to take up the option of an additional year, it is excellent news for the Ospreys. He is a fantastic professional, on and off the pitch, who would be an asset to any squad. With an abrasive edge and an incredible level of work in the contact area, he is one of the best in the world in his position and we are delighted that he sees his future as an Osprey."
Angus O'Brien has quickly settled into the Wales Sevens squad after solid performances in Hong Kong and Japan. With two rounds remaining in Glasgow and Twickenham on the World Series, WRU TV's Graeme Gillespie chats to the rising star.
Wales winger Luke Morgan has established himself as one of the deadliest finishers on the Sevens World Series. WRU TV's Graeme Gillespie catches up with him on the eve of this weekend's round in Glasgow.
All roads lead to Cardiff on Sunday for the SSE SWALEC Finals Day at the Millennium Stadium. Cambrian Welfare tackle Ystradgynlais in the Bowl final, Ystrad Rhondda play Newcastle Emlyn in the Plate final while defending champions Pontypridd face Bridgend in the Cup final.
WRU Chief Executive Roger Lewis, Deputy Minister for Culture, Sport and Tourism Ken Skates and WRU Chairman Gareth Davies earlier this week launched a new competition in conjunction with the WRU unveiling its archive room.
Welsh players and management joined Deputy Minister for Sport Ken Skates at the Pierhead Building, Cardiff Bay earlier this week to reveal the Union's pioneering school-club hub initiative has been so successful the project will now almost double the scale of the original project.
The Scarlets, Newport Gwent Dragons, Cardiff Blues and the Ospreys look ahead to Judgement Day III which sees the Blues take on the Ospreys (2.30) and the Dragons tackle the Scarlets (4.45pm) at the Millennium Stadium tomorrow afternoon.
Ystradgynlais and Ynysddu played out a titanic struggle at Taffs Well in the SSE SWALEC Bowl semi-final. At the end of the game neither team could be separated after a 15-15 stalemate but Ystradgynlais go through on try count.
Blues strike first in JD III battle - Newport Gwent Dragons lock Andrew Coombs, WRU referee Dylan Llyr Jones and Cardiff Blues hooker Matthew Rees decide dressing room allocations for Judgement Day III
Wales Under 18 captain Calum Haggett has received a conditional offer to read Biomedical Science at St Anne's College, Oxford. WRU chairman Gareth Davies went to meet Calum and Coleg y Cymoedd Principal Judith Evans to wish him luck in his exams and pass on some of his personal experience.