Smith signs three year deal with Australia and Brumbies




The Australian Rugby Union has anounced that Back-rower George Smith has signaled his intention to stay a Brumby for life after signing a new three year deal with the Australian Rugby Union and Brumbies Rugby.

In their weekly newsletter they said that Smith, who has missed just one match for the CA Brumbies since making his debut in the 2000 Super 12 season, has secured his future with the two-time champions until the end of the 2009 season.

“Canberra is my second home and after seven seasons the Brumbies are like family,” said the Wallaby back-rower at today’s press conference in Canberra to announce his new deal.

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“The next three years will be an important time in my career and I’m very happy that I’ll be spending those years at the Brumbies,” he said.

“I got my first opportunity at the Brumbies and I’ve been able to develop my game alongside some of the best players in the world and play in the best rugby environment in Australia.”

At just 25 years of age, Smith has a list of achievements to rival any of the game’s greats.

He won the coveted John Eales Medal in 2002 and has claimed the Brumbies’ annual ‘Brett Robinson Player’s Player’ gong four times.

In just his seventh season at international level, the Manly-born flanker has racked up a formidable 60 test caps and will run out for his 75th match for the Brumbies this Saturday against the Chiefs.

Smith has been a model of consistency at both Test and Super 14 level with his ability to consistently turn over opposition ball and pressure the opposition into mistakes.

“He’s got a tremendous work-rate and is relentless at the breakdown,” says CA Brumbies Head Coach Laurie Fisher.

“He’s been consistently among the best players at both Super 14 and Test level for a number of seasons and it is a huge boost to the team to have George with us for another three seasons,” said Fisher.

Qantas Wallaby Head Coach John Connolly says Smith is an experienced and skilful player at both state and international level.

“George is definitely a talented player and someone who has so much to offer Australian Rugby now, and in the future,” said Connolly.

Brumbies Rugby CEO Andrew Fagan said that Smith was a key player in the future of the Brumbies organisation.

“We’re absolutely delighted that George has decided to renew his contract with the Brumbies,” said Fagan.

“He’s a once-in-a-generation player and has been a key part of our success over the years and will play a core role in the team’s success over the next three seasons.”

Smith’s three-year deal sees him become the first player to sign with the Australian Rugby Union through to the 2009 season, with ARU Managing Director and CEO Gary Flowers saying the process is well and truly on track.

“A player of George Smith’s ability and experience will be extremely important over the next three years, especially during the 2007 Rugby World Cup,” said Flowers.

“We’re well and truly on track with our ongoing player negotiations, and are especially happy with the progress for a number of key Wallabies.”

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