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RaboDirect PRO12
Schmidt signs new Leinster deal
ESPN Staff
October 5, 2012
Leinster coach Joe Schmidt, Leinster v Racing Metro, Heineken Cup, RDS, Dublin, Ireland, October 9, 2010
Joe Schmidt has extended his stay with Leinster until the end of next season © Getty Images
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Leinster have announced that coach Joe Schmidt has signed a one-year contract extension that means he will remain with the province until at least the end of the 2013-14 campaign.

Schmidt, 46, has led the province to back-to-back Heineken Cup triumphs as well as the runners-up spot in each of the last two PRO12 campaigns since joining from ASM Clermont Auvergne fresh from securing the Bouclier de Brennus with the French giants.

The New Zealander has also been linked with a supporting role on the British & Irish Lions' tour to Australia next summer but is firmly focused on tasting further glory with Leinster. "I'm lucky to be part of such a positive coaching team and to have the top quality support staff we have," he said in a statement. "The professionalism of the players is a real asset and they constantly challenge themselves and each other to improve, which makes them a great group to coach.

"The wider Leinster community have really made my family and I feel welcome here and we have been fortunate to have enjoyed some memorable success on the field. Let's hope that with continued hard work - and a bit of luck - that there will be more bright days ahead."

Commenting on the new deal, chief executive Michael Dawson added: "I am delighted that Joe will remain with Leinster for the next two seasons. Since arriving from France he has overseen and led a period of great growth and success for Leinster, both on and off the field.

"Joe is an outstanding leader and ambassador for the province and he continues to cultivate strong values within our organisation. I know that this news will be welcomed by our loyal following across the province and beyond."

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