McIntyre heading to France

Super Rugby
by Sam Phillips

Jake McIntyre will leave the Reds at the end of the season, with French Top 14 club Agen announcing they have secured his services for the 2017-18 season overnight.

The newly promoted club have bounced back after spending the 2016-17 season in Pro D2 and McIntyre will be a solid addition to a team hoping to avoid relegation in 2017-18.

McIntyre was touted as Quade Cooper's long term replacement after coming through the ranks as a promising Australian Schoolboy representative but the Queensland attack failed to flourish under his guidance last season.

He is a solid player and his professionalism is top class but with Cooper's return and the rise of young playmaking gun Hamish Stewart, the Reds didn't want to part with any significant cash to keep McIntyre on the books for 2018 and beyond.McIntyre will join Agen for the 2017-18 season. Photo: RUGBY.com.au/Stuart Walmsley"Jake is an absolutely quality individual," Reds coach Nick Stiles said.

"He's someone that is a real professional with how he goes about his business so I was excited that he was able to pick up a contract and continue to play professionally.

"He's such a good bloke and it's difficult as a 10 here with Quade Cooper and Hamish Stewart coming up."

Stewart recently penned an extension that will keep him at Ballymore until the end of 2019 and there are big wraps from everyone at Ballymore as to the kind of player he could become.

A big Queensland U20s campaign saw him usurp McIntyre as Cooper's bench cover and that is one of the determining factors in the decision to head to France.

"I can understand someone like Jake wanting to look for opportunities overseas," Stiles said.McIntyre steered the Reds attack in 2016. Photo: Getty Images"Jake was a good example for a lot of our other players as to how to prepare for a football game.

"Being a 10 is very difficult and you have got to put a lot of time into the game plan, into understanding it, driving it and understanding how to get the best out of the players around you.

"Jake worked very hard on that and he's only 23, I think, so he will go overseas and sometimes a stint overseas can help sharpen you up.

"As we've seen now with the fluid movement of footballers, it doesn't mean he is finished in Australia."

The news comes as the Reds today announced the signing of three young forwards.

The Reds take on the Brumbies on Friday night at Suncorp Stadium, kicking off at 7:45pm AEST, broadcast LIVE on FOX SPORTS and on radio at RUGBY.com.au.

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