Saints sign Gloucester centre Symons

Saints have added to their centre options for next season by completing the signing of Gloucester's Andy Symons.

Monday, 26th March 2018, 1:54 pm
Updated Monday, 26th March 2018, 2:00 pm
Andy Symons will arrive at Saints this summer, but Tom Stephenson's future remains unclear (picture: Kirsty Edmonds)

The 26-year-old, whose former clubs include Leicester Tigers and Tasman Makos, has made 20 appearances for the Cherry and Whites since joining from Worcester Warriors in 2016.

He will arrive at Saints this summer to compete with the likes of Rob Horne, Piers Francis and Luther Burrell for a centre berth.

Uncertainty surrounds the future of two other Northampton centres, with Nafi Tuitavake and Tom Stephenson currently out of contract at the end of the current campaign.

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But Symons will definitely be strutting his stuff at Saints next season and he can't wait to get started at Franklin's Gardens.

“I’m hugely excited to be joining up with Northampton Saints next season,” said Symons.

“The options at centre at Franklin’s Gardens are already exceptional, and I’m relishing the thought of testing myself alongside the likes of Rob Horne, Luther Burrell, and Piers Francis.

“Coming to Northampton with an opposition shirt on has always been an intimidating experience; I can’t wait to have such as passionate group of supporters behind me next year.

“Saints’ ambition to succeed is clear to see from the players and coaches they’ve already got on board, and I want to play my part.”

Symons started his career with Saracens Amateurs and Old Albanians, but after linking up with the Saracens Academy, a bold move to New Zealand beckoned for his first taste of professional rugby.

After spending a season playing for Tasman in the ITM Cup, Symons then returned to the UK to join Worcester Warriors in 2013 – via Leicester Tigers’ sevens side.

Making his debut in the Anglo-Welsh Cup later that year, the centre opened his Aviva Premiership account with a debut score against the Tigers.

Standing at 6ft 5in tall, Symons soon made his impression in the Premiership, making more than 50 appearances for Worcester before switching to Gloucester in 2016.

Despite an injury-hit first campaign with the Cherry and Whites, he has made a big impact this term, establishing himself in the first team at Kingsholm.

And Saints’ interim head coach Alan Dickens is confident Symons will continue his upward trajectory in the Aviva Premiership when he dons the black, green and gold next season.

Dickens said: “Andy’s a big, ball-carrying centre who really impressed when he played against us earlier this season.

“Injuries have held him back slightly but we’re positive he’ll fit well into our midfield for next season – we’re delighted to have him on board.”