Tonight’s rugby news as new English giants announce signing of Welsh-born talent and WRU make new appointment

Tonight’s rugby news as new English giants announce signing of Welsh-born talent and WRU make new appointment

These are your evening rugby headlines on Tuesday, April 23.

New Welsh-qualified talent joins English giants

Sought-after hooker Kepueli Tuipulotu has joined Bath Rugby’s senior academy ahead of next season.

The 18-year-old, who hails from Pontypool, will join the Premiership giants upon finishing his sixth form studies at the prestigious Harrow School. He has captained England at under-18 level and attracted interest as a member of the London Irish academy before the club went bust.

Tuipulotu, who is the son of former Dragons centre Sione and the younger brother of Wales Women international Sisilia, is considered one of the brightest prospects in the English game due to his raw power, relentless work rate and set-piece prowess. While he has represented England at age-grade level because he is studying there, he is not tied to the Red Rose and is still eligible to play for Wales and Tonga, with the WRU reportedly desperate to convince him to switch allegiance from England going forward.

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Tuipolotu is one of five exciting young players to have joined Bath’s Senior Academy, with the new intake combining their rugby with courses at the University of Bath. Backrow Connor Treacey, centre Charlie Griffin, fly-half Jack Woods and winger Tyler Offiah – son of rugby league legend Martin – have all put pen to paper on their first professional deals alongisde the hooker.

“I’m still young in terms of my rugby career so whether I am pulling on the shirt of Bath Rugby or that of a representative age-group, I want to be the best that I possibly can,” said Tuipolotu after his move was confirmed.

“In the player meeting, Johann [van Graan] talked to us about focusing day-by-day, trying to get better and that’s my passion. My aim is just to consistently train and play as best as I can and if I can do that then it will open new doors for me in the future.”

Welsh referee appointed to top role

Welsh referee Ian Davies has been confirmed as the WRU National Elite Performance Match Official Manager.

Davies, who has refereed over 1srcsrc first class matches in the URC and in Europe, will lead match officiating across performance rugby for the WRU and takes over from the retired Paul Adams. With the likes of Amber Stamp-Dunstan, Jenny Davies, Ben Breakspear and Ben Connor all beginning to make their mark at international level, the 46-year-

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