Matt Hopper commits to Harlequins until 2017

English Premiership Rugby club Harlequins have announced that centre Matt Hopper has committed his future to the Club, having re-signed until at least June 2017.

Hopper joined Harlequins in 2011 from Greene King IPA Championship side Cornish Pirates and since then has become an established and vital member of the midfield, making 80 senior appearances since his try scoring debut against Gloucester in 2011.

The skilful centre, who is a rock in defence, has been one of the squad’s most consistent players this season, playing in 16 of the 19 senior matches across all competitions.

Son of former Exeter captain Keith Hopper, Matt previously spent a year playing for Manly Marlins in Australia after graduating from Cardiff University and in the coming weeks he is expected to become a qualified carpenter.

The 29 year-old, who is a keen surfer, enjoyed international honours in his first season with Harlequins by being named in the England Saxons squad. Matt was called into the squad for a second time in 2014 to face Ireland Wolfhounds in Exeter, the city of his birth.

Commenting on the re-signing, Hopper said: “I’m absolutely delighted to re-sign with Harlequins; it really was a clear cut decision for me. Personally, my family and I have thoroughly enjoyed moving to this club and it is definitely where I feel I belong at this time in my rugby career.

“The style of rugby, enthusiasm of the boys and coaching staff on a daily basis and the success I have been fortunate enough to be a part of over the past four years were the drawing factors for me to stay. My rugby has continued to grow throughout my time here and I look forward to battling it out with the other centres over the coming seasons.”

Director of Rugby Conor O’Shea added: “Matt is a warrior; rugby is a physical game and Matt allies a huge amount of skill to that fighting quality you need to succeed at this level. We are delighted Matt has committed to us and we look forward to watching him continue to develop.”

Mark Mapletoft, Harlequins Backs Coach commented: “Communication is such an important component of the modern game and in the three years Matt has been with us, he has grown in confidence and developed into a key player in that area, both on and off the pitch.”

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