Monday 16 October 2017

Connacht sign up Pro12-winning duo for next season as they look to defend league crown

Will Slattery

Will Slattery

Connacht are losing some big names as they look to continue on an upward curve next season but the province has today been boosted with the announcement that four players have signed deals to play the upcoming campaign with Pat Lam's men.

JP Cooney and Shane O'Leary - who both featured on the bench during Connacht's Pro12 final win over Leinster - have signed new deals along with Daniel Qualter to remain with the westerners. Rory Moloney has been promoted from the province's academy to the senior squad.

Cooney, who can play both at both loosehead and tighthead prop, recovered from a shoulder injury early in the season to play a prominent supporting role during Connacht's Pro12 title win.

Read more: Brian O'Driscoll has revealed the Irish backline that should start against South Africa

O'Leary played significant game time at out-half last season after a series of injuries at the position. The ex-Grenoble back kicked 31 points in the eight games he played.

Second row Qualter played six games last year, getting his first start against Newcaslte in the European Challenge Cup while back row Moloney (21) is still waiting for his first senior cap.

Connacht also confirmed that the following players have left the province:

Rodney Ah You, George Naoupu, Fionn Carr, Robbie Henshaw, Aly Muldowney, Jason Harris-Wright, AJ MacGinty, Ian Porter, Conor Finn, Api Pewhairangi.

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