New deals for Tigers props
Leicester's international props Martin Castrogiovanni and Marcos Ayerza have signed new three-year deals.
Last Updated: 25/01/08 11:00am
Leicester Tigers have been boosted by the news that international props Martin Castrogiovanni and Marcos Ayerza have signed new three-year deals with the Guinness Premiership champions.
The front-row duo are a powerful combination in the Tigers pack and they have now committed themselves to stay at Welford Road for a further three years.
26-year-old Castrogiovanni signed from Italian club Calvisano and made an immediate impact in his first season with the club last year as he was named Guinness Premiership Player of the Year.
Ayerza arrived back in 2006 from Argentina and he has already clocked up 40 appearances in a Leicester shirt, and both men played a big part in Leicester making three finals last season.
Argentinian-born Italy international Castrogiovanni says he thoroughly enjoyed his first season at Leicester and was happy to extend his stay.
"I am enjoying my time at Leicester, and when you are happy it makes the decision easier to stay," said Castrogiovanni.
"There is an excellent squad of players here and the supporters have been great to me since I arrived. Those things helped to make me very happy to agree a new contract."
25-year-old Ayerza played for new Tigers coach Marcelo Loffreda at the World Cup for Argentina, and he has also agreed a three-year extension.
"It was a big change for me coming here last year but for my rugby career Leicester Tigers is a great place to be," said Ayerza.
"I have learned a lot from top international players and the coaches here and I am looking forward now to improving more in the next three years with the club."
Loffreda was delighted to have secured the services of the powerful prop duo at Leicester.
"We believe Martin and Marcos are among the best young props around, and we are delighted they are happy to stay," said the head coach.
"They have worked very hard in their time with this club, they have trained and played well, and they are also popular members of the squad.
"I am sure they will both continue to improve their game here, and they will develop as top-quality players at this club."