Quinn Roux and John Cooney will join Connacht on loan from PRO12 champions Leinster next season.
South African born Roux will play with Connacht until December 31, 2014 while scrum-half Cooney has agreed a season-long loan at the province. Cooney will rejoin Leinster after the 2014-15 season.
The 24 year old scrum half is undergoing rehabilitation on his shoulder and will finish off the treatment with Leinster before joining up with Connacht. Cooney has failed to break into the Leinster team and has made just eight starts over the past three seasons. However, he has impressed at underage level and in the Emerging Ireland squad.
Second row Roux will come into the Connacht set up as a replacement for the recently retired Craig Clarke. Roux has made 14 starts for Leinster since joining them from Western Province in 2012.
Connacht head coach Pat Lam is delighted with the new deal with Leinster and the IRFU.
“This is brilliant news for everyone involved. We’re delighted to get the loan deal over the line,” he said.
“With the scrum half position, John (Cooney) will be pushing for a place along with the incoming Ian Porter as well as Caolin Blade from the Academy so it’s great for competition.”
“With the unfortunate retirement of Craig Clarke, it certainly helps to have Quinn (Roux) coming in to bolster that area and offer us more selection options.”
“We’ve had glimpses of what these young players can do and they are both promising additions to our squad. They are coming from a highly successful team where there is massive strength in depth and huge competition in their positions so this will be a great opportunity for them to push for more PRO12 and European rugby game-time.”
“They are ambitious, hard-working men and hopefully they can make the most of their time here. We’re certainly looking forward to welcoming them in to our team.”