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Aviva Premiership
Gloucester plunder Pirates for Cook
ESPN Staff
July 12, 2012
Rob Cook was one of the Cornish Pirates' star performers on their way to the Championship final © Brian Tempest
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Tournaments/Tours: Aviva Premiership

Gloucester have bolstered their back three resources ahead of the new Aviva Premiership campaign with the signing of highly-rated Cornish Pirates fullback Rob Cook.

The 28-year-old makes the switch to Kingsholm on a two-year deal having been one of the standout performers in the RFU Championship throughout a three-season spell at Mennaye Field during which time he notched 26 tries and over 1,000 points.

Reportedly a Premiership target throughout that time, most recently he helped steer the Pirates to the Championship final where they were narrowly beaten by London Welsh.

Cook is set to vie with fellow new recruit Martyn Thomas and the currently injured Olly Morgan for the No.15 with coach Nigel Davies welcoming the competition within the squad. "Ideally, I like to have three players competing for every position in the side," Davies said. "Olly's doing well with his rehab but we don't want to rush him. If Martyn were to pick up a knock, we'd be short of numbers."

The signing of Cook and Leicester's Billy Twelvetrees is set to ease the burden on first-choice kicker Freddie Burns while the latest addition to the squad may also allow Jonny May to feature mainly on the wing having impressed in the position during England's recent tour of South Africa.

"Rob is a perfect addition to the squad," added Davies. "He's been a stand out performer at Championship level for several seasons and brings something different to the table in that he's a quality goal kicker as well. We feel that he's ready to make the step up and are delighted that he'll do so in the Cherry and White of Gloucester."

Cook only penned a new deal with the Pirates back in April but admitted the chance to move to the Premiership was just too good to turn down. "It's a great opportunity for me and I'm genuinely excited at the prospect as playing in the Aviva Premiership has always been a goal of mine," Cook said. "Leaving the Pirates wasn't an easy decision to make as I've spent three great seasons there and made friends for life. They've been great about it all and their result will be the first one I look out for each weekend.

"Once I'd spoken to Nigel, however, and listened to his vision for Gloucester, I knew immediately that it was something I wanted to be part of. Gloucester have got a great young squad and I'm just looking forward now to getting down to some hard work with my new team mates in training and making sure I'm ready to go when called upon."

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