Hooper set to leave Leeds Carnegie

Leeds Carnegie have today confirmed that captain Stuart Hooper, 26, will leave the club at the end of his current contract.


Hooper has been with the Headingley Carnegie-based club since 2003 when he joined from Saracens. The second rower has since spent five seasons at the club making 102 appearances in all competitions and captaining the side for the past three seasons.


Commenting on the announcement Director of Rugby Stuart Lancaster said, “We are obviously disappointed to be losing Stuart but he is a player who has given outstanding service to the club.


He is a player and a person I hold in the highest regard and I have no doubt he will be giving his all for the team until the end of the season.

 

We made Stuart an extremely attractive offer to remain at the club however he has decided that the time is right in his career to look for a fresh challenge in a new environment from next season.

“Stuart was one of the loyal players who stood by the club two years ago and I have no hesitation at all in retaining him as captain of the club for the remainder of this season.


We have a massive few weeks of Guinness Premiership rugby coming up and we need to put out the side that has the best chance of winning and that is with Stuart as Captain.

 

Stuart is one of the few players who are out of contract for next season and we are currently speaking to the other players who we wish to retain.

This is being done in conjunction with our negotiations with new players to come into the club which are at an advanced stage,” added Lancaster.


Hooper played for England A in 2005 after winning the Powergen Cup with Leeds in the same year. Hooper added, “This has been an extremely difficult decision to make.

 

I have had five wonderful years with Leeds, during which time I have developed the utmost respect for all the players, coaches and support staff, they have all helped me develop as a player and person.

In order to be fair to the club, I wanted to make the decision about my future as soon as possible, so they could plan for the future and now we can get on with the rest of the season and progressing in the Guinness Premiership and the European Challenge Cup.


“It has always been a huge honour to play for and captain Leeds. For the remainder of the season my focus will be completely on keeping us in the Guinness Premiership.


I would like to thank everyone at the club for their support. Having played over 100 games for the club, I feel that the time is right to move on for a fresh challenge but I will always have a special affection for Leeds and Headingley Carnegie,” added Hooper.

Rugbyweek.com

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