Connacht have confirmed that Kiwi centre Bundee Aki and Tralee lock Ultan Dillane have signed contract extensions.
The news arrives as a massive boost for Pat Lam and his side, with two of their standout players committing to the western province for the foreseeable future in the midst of keen interest from Munster and, in Aki's case, alo France and England.
26-year-old Aki has signed a three-year extension with the Pro 12 champions, with Kerryman Dillane signing on for a further two seasons.
Connacht CEO Willie Ruane said:
Both Bundee and Ultan made it clear from the start that they were keen to stay and play their rugby with Connacht. They are truly committed to the overall vision for the province and their signatures are a big boost to the future of Connacht Rugby. We’re delighted, for the two players and for our supporters, to be able to share this news.
Aki & Dillane sign contract extensions with Connacht Rugby - full story here @ https://t.co/ZWRutmdUsU
— Connacht Rugby (@connachtrugby) October 25, 2016
The news comes as hugely relieving for Connacht fans less than 48 hours after Aki appeared to suggest that his time out west had reached its conclusion - though we did mention at the time that it is contract season.
The news means that Aki will now in all likelihood go on to play for Ireland when he becomes eligible next Autumn.