Ospreys Rugby are delighted to announce that versatile front rower Dmitri Arhip has signed a new two-year deal.
The 25-year Moldovan international has joined Alun Wyn Jones, Sam Lewis, Eli Walker, Ashley Beck, Jonathan Spratt and Ben John in committing his future to the region.
Arhip, who can play in all three front row positions, signed for the Ospreys in November 2012, making a big impression as he played nine times for the region in his first season, scoring one try in a 52-19 demolition of the Dragons at the Liberty Stadium.
Having impressed with his physicality, there were big expectations on Arhip for this season, only for him to unfortunately suffer a ruptured Achilles tendon during the friendly against Bath in August. He is currently on course to return to full training ahead of pre-season.
He began his career in his native Moldova with Kishniev Blue Marine from where he moved to Dinamo Bucharest in Romania, winning the national title before transferring to Russia to play for Yenisey-STM Krasnoyarsk. He helping them to the 2011 Superleague title, finishing runners up in 2012.
After signing his contract, Arhip said:
“This is very good news and a good chance for me to be with the Ospreys for a longer time.
“It’s a big step-up for me, to play for the Ospreys, with good players. Professional rugby is harder and faster so it is a good experience for me. The first step for me is to recover from injury, work in pre-season, and be ready for next season.”
Andy Lloyd, Rugby Operations Manager at the Ospreys, welcomed the good news saying:
“Dmitri was a fantastic find for us as supporters saw last season, and he has the potential to become a key player for the region. Because of his unfortunate injury we haven’t seen the best of him.
“He is an amazing athlete and once we get him back up to full fitness he will be a real asset for us. He has a great attitude, is diligent, and is always looking to learn. He has a very bright future as an Osprey. His versatility means he offers real value, as he can play right across the front row. He has a little bit to learn, but we see him really adding depth to our pool of tight heads while providing valuable cover elsewhere.
“With the salary cap in place, and the lack of central financial assistance, it is important that we get our recruitment right and the signing of Dmitri, along with the likes of Jeff Hassler, Tyler Ardron and Aisea Natoga are the result of a lot of hard work being done behind the scenes to find talented players who may be under the radar but bring something really different to the Ospreys mix.”