Centre Jonathan Davies signs new Scarlets contract

Jonathan Davies has won 24 caps since he won his debut in 2009
Jonathan Davies has won 24 caps since he won his debut in 2009

Wales centre Jonathan Davies has signed a two-year contract extension keeping him at the Scarlets until the end of the 2013-2014 season.

The moves bucks the trend of out-of-contract Wales-based players signing for French or English clubs.

Despite the regions agreeing to a salary cap from next season and interest from outside Wales, Davies has decided to stay at Parc y Scarlets.

"I'm delighted to be staying at the Scarlets," said 23-year-old Davies.

"The region has done a lot to support my rugby career to date and it's where I feel at home as a player and where I feel I am best placed to further my ambitions both at regional and international level.

"There's great team ethic, the Scarlets boys all work hard for each other and we're a close-knit group because so many of us have come through the ranks together from within the region.

"There's a strong and ambitious spirit in this team and we know what it means to wear the Scarlets shirt, given our great heritage.

"Our style and brand of rugby suits me as a player and I'm just looking forward to being part of an exciting set of Scarlets backs next season."

Scarlets head coach Nigel Davies had been confident he could hang on to Davies, who is part of a talented young backline at the region that also includes George North and Scott Williams.

"I think given the current climate, this says a lot about Jon's values as an individual and ambitions as a player and his belief and commitment to our Scarlets squad and rugby environment," said Davies.

"It was important to Jon to stay in Wales and he wanted to further his career within our set-up as somewhere where he knows he will play a crucial role going forward.

"We're obviously delighted that we signed a new deal with Jon, it's been in our planning for sometime and is part of our ongoing rugby strategy to retain our Welsh talent and importantly maintain consistency and continuity, where possible, in our team.

"Jon typifies the Scarlets way and our values and our philosophies in the way he approaches his training, his performances on the field and his character of the field.

"He's very much core and a part of our rugby family and as a popular local boy, I'm sure our supporters will be equally pleased that he's remaining with us."

It is rare good news for Welsh rugby amid a serious player drain.

Last season James Hook (Perpignan), Mike Phillips (Bayonne) and Lee Byrne (Clermont Auvergne) were all attracted across the English Channel.

And so far this season Gethin Jenkins, Luke Charteris, Aled Brew and Huw Bennett have all decided to head to France.