Underhill transfer confirmed

Young flanker, Sam Underhill, will make a switch to Bath at the end of the season, after the Aviva Premiership side reached an agreement with Ospreys Rugby for the former England U18 captain.

The 20-year old openside arrived in Wales two summers ago to study at Cardiff University and, after linking up with Bridgend Ravens, impressed enough during pre-season ahead of the 2015/16 campaign to be handed an opportunity with the region, going on to to thrive in the environment.

With the Ospreys missing three flankers at the 2015 Rugby World Cup the former Gloucester Academy graduate was handed his opportunity in the Guinness PRO12, turning heads with his physicality as he went on to play 16 times in his first season.

He picked up a shoulder injury in training last summer, surgery ruling him out of the opening months of this season but, since returning to action in November, he has made a further seven appearances.

Underhill has been a player in considerable demand having stated his understandable desire to represent England and with RFU selection policy preventing him from being considered whilst an Osprey.

With such demand for his services, it became clear that it would be in the best interests of all parties to reach an amicable agreement on his future with him contracted until summer 2018.

Andrew Millward, Managing Director, Ospreys Rugby, said:

“Sam has been straight down the line about his international loyalties since day one and his performances in an Ospreys shirt last season clearly put him in the spotlight as far as England goes. He has certainly thrived in our environment, where the focus is on development, allowing him to show his undoubted potential to a wider audience.

“While totally understanding his wish to give himself with the best chance of pursuing his England ambitions, our priority has always been to ensure that, whatever the outcome, the best interests of Ospreys Rugby were front and centre at all times. We have been able to reach agreement on the final year of Sam’s contract and he will head to Bath in the summer with our best wishes.”

Underhill said:

“The Ospreys is a great region with fantastic supporters and I've thoroughly enjoyed my time here. I can't say how grateful I am for the opportunities given to me by the staff and players alike.

“The management here have been extremely supportive of my long term goals in helping me move back to England and I'm very excited for a new challenge come the end of the season. For now my focus is on helping the team in whatever way I can to finish this season on a high.”