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Major League Rugby

Saracens Lock Latest to Join MLR

Another player has decided to make a move over to the US for a taste of Major League Rugby action

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(Photo by Ian Hitchcock/Getty Images)

Saracens lock Dominic Day has left the Premiership side to join San Diego Legion in the Major League Rugby on a two-year deal.

The 33-year-old has been at Allianz Park for two years, making 32 appearances and has been influential in helping the club’s young talent.

The former Scarlets and Bath lock is thankful for the chances he has been given at Sarries.

“It’s been an amazing two years. I’ve met a lot of really good people and have been a part of a team which has won four trophies since I’ve been here. It’s been more than I could ever have asked for. Saracens are a massive club and pride themselves on being up there and winning things; being part of that has been amazing,” he said.

As well as his efforts on the pitch and with the youth development he has also set up fourfive CBD with fellow lock George Kruis which is a brand that helps athletes maintain an active lifestyle.

Saracens director of rugby Mark McCall thanked Day for his time at the club and wished him luck in the US.

“Dom has been a brilliant person to have at the club over the last two seasons. In particular, he has played a key role in mentoring some of our younger players both on and off the field. We wish him and Nadia well as they embark on this exciting new challenge and will always be grateful to him for the huge contribution he has made at our club,” he said.

Day will now link-up with former England international Steffon Armitage, who joined San Diego Legion last week.

International

Another Star Joins a U.S. Major League Rugby Team

Transfers are flying in this week with players leaving for the U.S. and another one has just been announced

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(Photo by Ian Hitchcock/Getty Images)

Samu Manoa has joined U.S. side the Seattle Seawolves in what is another major promotion boost for Major League Rugby.

Manoa moves after just a single season with the Cardiff Blues and returns to his native America.

Speaking ahead of the move Manoa talked about his delight in being back in the USA to play rugby.

“It’s good to be back in the mix and play professional rugby here in the states. Especially joining the reigning MLR Champions, the Seattle Seawolves,” he said.

The 34-year-old has been playing professional rugby since 2011, when he joined Northampton Saints, before moving to Toulon in 2015 and then Cardiff in 2018.

He also has 22 caps for the USA Eagles and could now add to that with some good performances for the Seawolves.

Manoa’s move follows announcements from earlier this week that France centre Mathieu Bastareaud and All Black Adam Thomson will also join the MLR for the next season.

Bastareaud will join Rugby United New York while Thomson has signed for the Utah Warriors.

The MLR is gaining more and more traction with big names such as former England international Ben Foden and former Leinster out-half Cathal Marsh moving over last year. With that traction people can only wonder who the next big name will be to set-up shop in the U.S.

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International

2 Huge International Names confirmed to play in USA Major League.

An All Black and a French man.

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Photo by Ian Hitchcock/Getty Images

Major League Rugby in the United States was always going to be a slow burner but a few big names always help bring a little attention.

The current season saw a few bigger names make the move with former England International Ben Foden moving to New York along with former Leinster Out-Half, Cathal Marsh.

This morning, 2 big names were confirmed to be joining the MLR. Mathieu Bastareaud had been widely rumoured to be making a ‘loan’ style move to NYC post World Cup and this was confirmed by the Frenchman via his Instagram.

The French star, Bastareaud is off for a sabbatical season in New York leaving Toulon at the end of the Top 14 campaign for a season before returning to the south of France to complete the final year of his contract.

“I’ve decided to join New York after the World Cup,” Bastareaud told Canal+ after Toulon’s Top 14 win over Bordeaux-Begles on Sunday.

“I wanted a change. It’s the best compromise for me in terms of my family life and life experience.”

The deal was agreed between Toulon’s owner Mourad Boudjellal and New York’s French general manager Pierre Arnald.

​Bastareaud, who is being hailed as the biggest name to play in the United States competition, had an offer to go to South Africa to play Super Rugby with the Sharks, according to French media reports.

“Mathieu Bastareaud is a guy apart. He has made history at this club and has given a lot,” Collazo told Agence France Presse.

“He needs to see something else and breathe a little bit. He’s going to discover New York.

Another huge name that will feature in the MLR sooner rather than later is former All Black back-rower, Adam Thomson.

Thomson returns to professional rugby 18 months after his last pro game following a serious spinal infection kept him in hospital for almost two months at the beginning of 2018.

He will join the the Utah Warriors as an injury replacement for Jackson Kaka, who has been ruled out for the remainder of the MLR season with a neck and shoulder injury.

Thomson will remain with the Warriors for the 2020 season will also be joined by Fijian sevens star Vatemo Ravouvou.

Thomson will bring a wealth of experience to the MLR side having played for years in Super Rugby sides that included the Highlanders, Red and Rebels. He also went on to win 29 caps for the All Blacks where he was a member of the World Cup-winning squad in 2011.

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