PA Sport

Nick Abendanon extends Clermont Auvergne deal

Nick Abendanon extends Clermont Auvergne deal
By PA Sport

04/09/2015 at 12:44Updated 04/09/2015 at 13:23

Former England and Bath full-back Nick Abendanon has signed a new three-year contract with Clermont Auvergne.

The 29-year-old has committed to a new deal that runs until June 2018, and also holds the option to extend for a further year in due course.

Abendanon was voted European Player of the Year for 2015, owing to his role in driving Clermont to the inaugural European Champions Cup final in just his first season in France.

Clermont lost out 24-18 to Toulon, the Cote d'Azur club claiming a record third successive European crown, but Abendanon won huge plaudits for his maiden campaign across The Channel.

"Nick is a model of integration who perfectly fits our game and progresses it through his performance and involvement," said Clermont's sporting director Jean-Marc Lhermet.

Abendanon spent nine years scything through Aviva Premiership defences for Bath before joining Clermont last summer.

The South Africa-born counter-attack specialist has won two caps for England, but never managed to claim a tangible Test arena foothold.

Abendanon ran in a thrilling try as Clermont battled out the European showpiece finale with Toulon at Twickenham in May, but was also at fault for one of their rivals' scores.

His thirst for swashbuckling raids continues to offer a double-edge to his attacking sword, and ultimately limited his international opportunities.

"We can only be satisfied and happy to extend Nick's contract for several seasons," said Clermont head coach Franck Azema.

"Throughout last season he took the initiative and pushed the group forward.

"We have the ambition to win titles; for this, in addition to recruiting high-class players, we must be able to keep our best players. This is what we have done by extending with Nick. "

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