With all the speculation regarding the future of Sean O'Brien, Ian Madigan and Simon Zebo in recent weeks, the IRFU would have welcomed the news that Rory Best is staying at Ulster with open arms.
Many Irish players are reaching the end of their contracts in the near future, and Rory Best was one of a number of high profile names on that list that had fans of Irish rugby worried, but the hooker put pen to paper on a two year extension earlier today which will keep him at the Kingspan Stadium until 2018.
Best then revealed his happiness after agreeing to the new terms and expressed the privilege he feels to be able to captain Ulster:
I am very happy to have signed a two year Irish contract to remain with Ulster Rugby.
It is a great honour to play for Ulster and Ireland and I am privileged to have the opportunity to captain this talented group of Ulster players. Our challenge now is to deliver on the promise we have shown and reward our fans with strong performances.
At 33 years of age, Best is still a key component of the Irish team having started all but one game at this year's Rugby World Cup, as well as every game of the 2015 Six Nations.
He is Ireland's most capped hooker with 89 international appearances to his name, and he looks set to add to that total having agreed to remain in Ireland, so hopefully a few of his international teammates follow suit in the coming weeks.