Following their recent relegation from the Aviva Premiership London Irish have continued their recruitment drive with the addition of former Premiership winning centre Tom Stephenson from Northampton Saints.
Touted as a huge prospect, Stephenson made his 50th appearance for Saints during a 34-21 victory over Top 14 side Clermont Auvergne and his move to Irish will see him team up with former Saints players Danny Hobbs-Awoyemi and Stephen Myler.
“From speaking to Danny, who I’ve played with at Northampton and in the England Under-20s team, there is an exciting set-up at London Irish and I’m really enthusiastic about being part of the club’s future under Declan Kidney,” said Stephenson.
“I feel that I’m ready for a fresh challenge and hopefully I can hit the ground running when I arrive at Hazelwood in the summer.”
Stephenson, 23, who was part of the Saints set-up that scooped the Premiership and the European Rugby Challenge Cup in 2014, brings pace, power and creativity to the Exiles’ backline.
The two-time World Rugby U20 Championship winner has played 54 times for the Franklin’s Gardens outfit and has underlined his bourgeoning credentials with two tries last campaign.
London Irish technical consultant Declan Kidney said: “We’re very pleased that this opportunity has presented itself and I’m sure he will be keen to make his mark in the team when he arrives ahead of next season.”
Picture Credit: London Irish RFC