Bath Rugby have confirmed three new signings in their latest squad update.
Ben Spencer has been linked with a move to the Rec for sometime now with the club officially confirming that the scrum-half has put pen to paper on a three-year deal.
Spencer is well-known for his accurate kicking game and ability to provide quick ball from the breakdown. These skillsets coupled his work ethic and desire to succeed have seen his performances in the Premiership and Europe stand out in recent seasons. The Club’s focus on the scrum-half position has been clear when looking ahead to the future. Spencer’s addition is seen as a crucial and exciting piece of recruitment as work continues to progress off-the-field to develop the senior squad for 2020/21 and beyond.
A supporter favourite, Will Spencer, returns to the Club. Spencer came through the Bath Rugby academy spending four years developing with Blue, Black and White. Since then the abrasive lock has played for Worcester Warriors before joining Leicester Tigers in 2018. Spencer is an imposing figure on the field and dominates primarily in the second row. His physicality gives the Club yet another powerful option to complement its set piece and the 28 year old is hungry to return to the South West.
Juan Schoeman moves to Bath from Durban-based franchise, The Sharks. The 28-year-old is disciplined in the tough art of front-row combat having scrummed his way through and up the various age-group ranks in South Africa culminating in Junior Springbok selection for the World Rugby U20 Championship in 2011. Schoeman is a reliable and skilful front-row operator and will add further dominance to Bath’s already formidable front five.
Josh Matavesi, who joined the Club mid-season has made a clear impact in his short time in a Bath shirt. Matavesi’s attributes that will allow him to open up Bath’s attacking game in order to generate momentum and create tries. A genuine ball carrying threat, with the ability to run, pass and kick, the Fijian international, who plays at 10 and 12, is now committed to the Club for the next two seasons.
Finally, Cameron Redpath, who joined the Club in February is yet to pull on the Blue, Black and White. The 20-year-old played a significant part in the U20 World Championships in Argentina in 2019 and linked up again with Jones and the England squad this year ahead of the Guinness Six Nations clash against Ireland. Redpath brings a different dimension to Bath’s midfield, with the additional options of being able to play at 10 or 15. His wide skillset is a strong addition to the squad, both in the short-term and long-term.
The club can confirm that Max Clark will continue his career as a home-grown player with Bath Rugby, after progressing through the Academy and joining the Club full-time ahead of the 2014/15 season. Clark’s ball carrying ability alongside his defensive strengths allow him to impact the momentum of a game and his re-signing is important for the club moving into next season.
Max Green has also agreed a contract extension with the Blue Black and White, following an injury hit season for the scrum half, where he has been limited to two just appearances. The 24 year-old former U20 World Cup winner has made 27 senior appearances for Bath Rugby since his debut against London Irish in 2017, with his performances having shown huge signs of promise with his speed and quality of service having a hugely positive impact on Bath’s attack when he has played. He will progress into the future and really challenge for the scrum-half shirt.
Henry Thomas has also put pen to paper, the prop has signed a one-year deal and is relishing the opportunity to play for the Blue, Black and White again. After an injury hit start to the campaign Henry has worked incredibly hard and will be challenging our other tight heads for game time.
The extensions of Max, Max and Henry follow Sam Underhill, Max Wright, Jack Walker and Tom Ellis all recommitting their futures earlier this year.
Returning from Injury
The Club also celebrate many other talented players returning from injury, all of whom have worked incredibly hard with its Performance Department to come back stronger and will make a huge impact. In addition to Max Green and Max Clark; Joe Cokanasiga, Darren Atkins, Henry Thomas and Miles Reid all return to the Senior Squad.
These men have had limited chance to appear this season, with only Henry Thomas and Max Clark able to feature in the Gallagher Premiership.
Fabe Hamer-Webb has committed his long-term future to our Club by signing a senior contract. The emergence of Gabe is a real reinforcement of the work that’s going on within the Bath Rugby pathway, and the kind of potential that exists beneath the senior squad at the club. The moments that have been witnessed on the field from Gabe, such as his try-scoring debut against Ulster in the Champions Cup, are underpinned by his years of hard work and dedication.
Gabe’s promotion follows recent progression of home-grown players Tom de Glanville, Miles Reid and Will Vaughan into the Senior quad, and this shows the way for fellow U20 Internationals this year, Max Ojomoh, Nahum Merigan and Archie Griffin who will no doubt work hard to earn opportunities and to also push for a senior contract in the coming year.
The Club also share the outstanding news that seven players will progress from its U18 Academy group into the Senior Academy. Orlando Bailey, Gabe Goss, John Stewart, Ethan Staddon, Ewan Richards, Frankie Read and Tom Carr-Smith have all committed their futures to Bath Rugby.
This group of high potential players already hold well-established relationships with the likes of George Worboys, Gabe Hamer Webb, Max Ojomoh, and Nahum Merigan, many of them having played for the Club and for England together at various different ages and stages of their development. The strength of potential that exists beneath the senior squad; a group who will be striving to press their cases for game-time next year and towards future senior-contracts is as strong as it has ever been.
The club announced earlier this year that World Cup winner François Louw also proudly hangs up his boots - the 34-year-old Springbok is one of the longest-serving players in Bath Rugby’s squad, having been with the Club for nine seasons in what has
been an incredible domestic and international career. Fittingly, the famous Blue, Black and White shirt will be the last he pulls on as a professional player, after making over 140 appearances for the Club and settling in the City with his young family.