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RUGBY: Youngster Ford poised for Bath switch
10:22am Tuesday 22nd January 2013 in Sport
TEENAGE fly-half George Ford is poised to join father Mike at Bath at the end of the season, according to reports this morning.
The Leicester Tigers youngster, 19, is expected to leave Welford Road despite lengthy negotiations with the Midlands club over a new contract, the Leicester Mercury reported this morning.
England U20 star Ford, whose father is Bath's defence coach, was reportedly offered a two-year deal to stay with the Tigers, with one of the stumbling blocks being the amount of playing time on offer with Toby Flood the current encumbent in the Leicester No 10 shirt.
Ford, seen as one of England's brightest young starts, started 11 games for Leicester last season and came off the bench four times, adding a further nine starts and four subsitute appearances this term.
He helped the Tigers to victory in the LV= Cup and played a starring role in the Aviva Premiership semi final win over Saracens when Flood was injured.
Bath would have to pay Leicester up to £45,000 in compensation to Leicester for the services of the England U20 player.
Bath scrum coach Neal Hatley recently played down stories linking Bath with a move for Ford, saying: "A club as big as Bath will be linked with all sorts of players and the George link is easy because of his dad.
“The last we had heard, George is committed to Leicester and wants to stay and fight for a place.
“We have got decent inside knowledge but at the moment the impression is that he wants to stay and fight for his place at Leicester, which is about right if you know anything about the kid.’’
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