Ireland props Cian Healy and Mike Ross commit their futures to Leinster
Last Updated: January 30, 2013 6:43pm
Mike Ross: Key man for Leinster and Ireland
Ireland props Cian Healy and Mike Ross have committed their future to Leinster.
The front row duo have signed new contracts with the Irish Rugby Football Union which will keep them in Dublin, Healy until 2016 and Ross until 2015.
The news is a major boost to Leinster, who will lose fly-half Jonathan Sexton to Racing Metro in the summer.
Paris-based Racing will reportedly pay Sexton £640,000 a year for his services.
Leinster and Ireland full-back Rob Kearney subsequently warned that the departure of Sexton could see others follow, with French clubs paying more than the IRFU.
Tighthead Ross - the cornerstone of the Ireland pack and a key man in the forthcoming Six Nations - and loosehead Healy have though confirmed they will not be joining Sexton in France.
IRFU chief executive Philip Browne said: "It's a very strong sign for Irish rugby to have such important players to both the Leinster and Ireland teams committing their futures to remain playing here.
"The market place for players continues to be a competitive one, but the IRFU and the provinces will continue to work to retain the best players in Ireland."
The decision of two key members of Ireland's squad to sign new contracts has eased concerns that a
Kearney's own deal with the IRFU expires this season, while it was announced on Tuesday that Munster back row Peter O'Mahony would be staying in Limerick until 2015.