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Last Updated: Friday, 28 April 2006, 13:48 GMT 14:48 UK
Ospreys net fly-half starlet Hook
James Hook has signed a three-year deal with the Ospreys
James Hook has signed a three-year deal with the Ospreys
Ospreys have secured the services of James Hook by giving the Neath and Wales Under-21 fly-half his first full-time contract.

The 21-year-old has won rave reviews this year and was believed to be a target for the Newport Gwent Dragons.

But Hook will now make the step up to regional rugby with the Ospreys after signing a three-year deal

Outstanding lock Alun Wyn Jones, 21, is already established in the Ospreys side and has also signed until 2009.

With the capture of former New Zealand scrum-half Justin Marshall last week, plus the recent arrival of Kiwi back-row Filogia Tiatia the Ospreys squad is shaping up well for next season.

Waikato and Chiefs back-row Jono Gibbes is also thought to be close to joining.

Gibbes, 29, has won eight caps for New Zealand - his last against the British and Irish Lions last summer - but has fallen down the All Blacks pecking order after two injury-disrupted seasons.

Hook will contest the number 10 shirt with Shaun Connor and Matthew Jones, but says the Ospreys were the only side he wanted to join.

"There has been some speculation over my future over recent months but there is only one place where I want to play professional rugby and that is with the Ospreys," Hook said.

"I have enjoyed my time with Neath and I feel I have had enjoyed the best facilities and coaches, which has helped ensure I have achieved everything I had hoped to date in my career.

"I hope now to achieve similar success in a fully professional arena and signing with the Ospreys should give me this chance."

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