Connacht announce contract extensions for Jake Heenan and Craig Ronaldson

The pair have been tied down to new two-year deals with the province

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Image: ©INPHO/James Crombie

Connacht Rugby today confirmed that flanker Jake Heenan and inside back Craig Ronaldson had signed two-year contract extensions with the province.

Heenan (24) is a former New Zealand Under-20s captain and is currently in his third season with Connacht, with the province noting that he will become qualified to play for Ireland at the end of June.

Ronaldson was drafted into the Connacht squad in the summer of 2013 straight from the AIL, and has turned out in both the number 10 and 12 shirt.

The province note that his strong performances in both positions "as well as his impressive goal kicking ability" were the reason for him being given a new deal.

Image:  ©INPHO/Ryan Byrne

Connacht Coach Pat Lam, who has been guiding the team to one of their best ever seasons to date, was thrilled to be able to announce that the pair would be continuing with the province. 

"Jake and Craig both started with Connacht the same season I did," said Lam "and it's been fantastic to witness their growth and development as rugby players in that time.

"I've known Jake for a long time now and I'm excited by how far he will take his game in the next two seasons.  While he has been frustrated with injuries, his determination and work ethic has ensured he has come back stronger each time.

"Craig has been a great asset for our squad over the last three seasons.  As an inside centre, who can cover outhalf, his versatility and goal kicking has been vital for the team as well as giving us excellent depth in the backs.

"With Champions Cup rugby guaranteed for next season, having the experience and commitment of both players to Connacht Rugby is very pleasing."