The Wallabies have received a massive boost ahead of Saturday's World Cup opener against Fiji with news locked Izack Rodda has signed a four-year deal with Rugby Australia and the Queensland Reds.
Rodda had been secured for the 2020 season but his extension until the end of 2023 means he will remain in Queensland until after the next World Cup and all but ensures he will take on the Reds captaincy after the departure of Samu Kerevi.
The Evans Head product, who finished his schooling at renowned rugby nursery Ipswich Grammar, said it was a "no-brainer" to commit his future to the Reds.
“It all started for me in Queensland, so it was a no-brainer to stay there for another four years," Rodda said.
“I’m excited to see what the future holds for this Reds team. We’ve all been together through that Queensland pathway."
The 23-year-old, who heads into Saturday's Test against Fiji with 21 caps already to his credit, shapes as a pack leader for both Queensland and Australia, with both Rory Arnold and Adam Coleman heading overseas after the World Cup.
Rodda was keen to get the deal done before the World Cup kicked off.
“It’s good to confirm and announce this before the World Cup starts this week so I can shift my focus on the Wallabies," Rodda said.
"But I'm definitely excited and honoured to re-sign with Australian Rugby and the Reds for another four years."
His signing continues a deliberate strategy from the Reds to lock in the young talent they have developed, with a promising squad emerging under coach Brad Thorn.
Rodda is the 10th player to have sign a long-term deal with the Reds following the recent announcements of Taniela Tupou (2023), Tate McDermott (2023), Fraser McReight (2023), Angus Blyth (2023), Alex Mafi (2022), Harry Wilson (2023), Harry Hoopert (2022), Hamish Stewart (2022) and Jordan Petaia (2022).
Liam Wright, Angus Scott-Young, Bryce Hegarty, Brandon Paenga-Amosa, Feao Fotuaika and Chris Feauai-Sautia have also re-committed with Queensland for next season and beyond.
"We’ve all come through together at U20s level and then progressed to NRC and then some made their Super Rugby debuts earlier than others, but we’re all now that same crew who went through with U20s," Rodda said.
“We’re all very close mates. There are good friendships there and we’re just going to keep building and looking forward to how we go as a team.
"I’ve been loving my time at the Reds creating friendships and it’s been great to learn under Thorny being an ex-second-rower who’s helped my game."
Reds head coach Brad Thorn welcomed Rodda's re-signing.
“He’s developing into a leader on and off the field," Thorn said. "He’s another guy who’s come through the Queensland system with Schoolboys, U20s and the NRC.
“At just 23, Izack has already played 21 Tests for Australia. He’s also about to represent his country at a World Cup which is a great achievement and we look forward to what the future holds for him."