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Page last updated at 08:19 GMT, Thursday, 30 December 2010

Bath eye St Helens star Kyle Eastmond in code switch

Kyle Eastmond
Eastmond's ability has been likened to cross-code legend Jason Robinson

Bath have held talks with St Helens scrum-half Kyle Eastmond about a potential switch from league to union.

The 21-year-old England international, who made his debut in 2008 before effectively replacing Saints legend Sean Long, has met Bath officials.

And Bath are aware that he has just one season left to run on his contract.

"He's one of league's most exciting prospects and could make the transfer across pretty seamlessly," Bath coach Brad Davis told BBC Radio Bristol.

"Any club he chooses to go to will greatly benefit from his services."

If Eastmond did make the move south he would follow the likes of Shontayne Hape and Chev Walker in swapping the 13-man code for Bath, although Sale Sharks have also reportedly been linked.

Eastmond's breakthrough year came in 2009 when he scored 129 points in 17 appearances, scoring all his side's points in their 18-10 Grand Final defeat to Leeds at Old Trafford.

Last season's campaign was hit by an ankle injury, which restricted him to just five appearances in the second half of the season.


He required two operations and missed England's trip down under for the Four Nations.

But, although he is expected to miss the start of the Super League season on 12 February, he should be close to full fitness by then.

Bath chief executive Nick Blofeld has added his weight to the bid to bring Eastmond to The Rec.

"We are always interested in good players," he told the Daily Express. "Kyle is clearly a very talented young man, who has already achieved a lot in league and has great potential in union.

"He is an impressive young man, very grounded but ambitious, and we'd be very interested in him joining Bath."

Bank-rolled by owner Bruce Craig, Bath will have money to spend on their squad next season with higher-earning captain Luke Watson leaving, former England international Danny Grewcock retiring and fly-half Butch James contemplating a return to South Africa.

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