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Ian Madigan to leave Leinster for Bordeaux - The Irish News
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Rugby Union

Ian Madigan to leave Leinster for Bordeaux

Ian Madigan (centre with ball) will leave Leinster at the end of the season to join French Top 14 side Bordeaux Bégles. Picture by Brian Lawless/PA
Cahair O'Kane

IRISH outhalf Ian Madigan will leave Leinster at the end of the season to join French Top 14 side Bordeaux Bégles.

The 26-year-old has played 135 times for Leinster since making his debut in 2009, winning two Heineken Cups, a Challenge Cup and two PRO12 titles during his time.

He had been pushed back down the pecking order in Leo Cullen’s side by Johnny Sexton’s return from Racing Metro at the start of this season.

His 25 Irish caps and two Six Nations titles have also come from behind the obstruction of Sexton.

Madigan paid tribute to Leinster but says he is looking forward to a new experience in France next year.

“While this was a very difficult decision for me to make, leaving the club that I have represented my whole professional life, I feel that the timing is right and it is a challenge that I'm looking forward to.

"Bordeaux Bègles are a team that are making strides in the Top 14 and in Europe and I look forward to being part of that journey and to experiencing a new style of rugby and a new life in France.

"I'd like to thank everyone in Leinster Rugby for their support over the years. I've played with some brilliant players and have worked with some exceptional coaches and while I am reluctant to single one out I want to mention Richie Murphy who has been by my side from my days in the Sub-Academy and has been a huge influence on me. Also to Mick Dawson who has been very supportive throughout my career and it has not gone unnoticed.”

Leinster head coach Leo Cullen said: “Ian has been a tremendous servant to Leinster and Irish rugby and we wish him well with his move abroad. We fully understand his motivations for deciding to join Bordeaux.

“Ian has come through the Leinster Academy and age grade system and at 26 still has a huge future in the game and we may see him return to Leinster at some point.”

Rugby Union

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