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The Emirates Western Force has continued to cement its foundations for the future by extending the contract of rising star Kyle Godwin until the 2016 Super Rugby season.
The 20-year-old Perth local was contracted until the end of next season, however, opted to extend his stay with the province by a further two years.
Godwin, who has been a revelation in the Force midfield this season, is one of four local products that will represent the Western Australian club from next season, alongside Kieran Longbottom and the returning Dane Haylett-Petty and Zack Holmes.
Queensland Reds outside back Luke Morahan and Brumbies scrumhalf Ian Prior will also join the squad for 2014.
Having made his Super Rugby debut last season, Godwin has held down the Emirates Western Force’s inside centre jersey in 2013 – starting in each of his 14 appearances this year and crossing for tries against the Sharks and the Waratahs.
The former Australian Schoolboy and Under 20 flyhalf says he’s excited about furthering his career with the Emirates Western Force.
“I’ve loved the opportunity that I’ve been given this year at the Force and I’m really keen for that to continue,” he said. “When the club gave me the opportunity to extend my contract [by another two years], I was very keen to take them up on the offer to help carry on what we’ve started.
“I’m really enjoying my rugby at the moment and the style of rugby we’re playing this season. We know we’ve still got a lot to work on but we feel as though we’re heading in the right direction and we’ve got a very positive outlook on what we can achieve.
“The rugby program that Michael Foley and the coaches have offered has been excellent and I feel like my game’s developed a lot this year. I still know there’s a lot to learn but I feel like I’m developing and improving every day with the help of the coaching staff and the senior players, and this will be very beneficial for my game over the next few years.
“I’ve enjoyed the challenge of playing inside centre this year. While I’d mostly played ‘10’ before, I’ve feel like I’ve been able to use my passing and running game, and am enjoying expanding my game in a new position.”
Head Coach Michael Foley says the longer-term retention of Godwin was a priority for the Emirates Western Force.
“Kyle’s been consistently one of our best performers this season, which is excellent considering its his first starting season as a Super Rugby player,” he said.
While Foley acknowledged Godwin’s skill, he singled out his character as his most impressive quality.
“His performances can be attributed to his meticulous preparation and professional approach to the game,” he said.
“We’re pleased to have another quality Perth player make a long-term commitment to the club.”
Name: Kyle Godwin
Position: Inside centre
Representative Rugby: 2012 Australian Under 20, 2009 Australian Schoolboys