May swaps Gloucester for Leicester

Jonny May (Getty Images)
Jonny May (Getty Images)

London - England wing Jonny May has joined Leicester from English Premiership rivals Gloucester, his new club announced on Monday, with lock Ed Slater moving in the opposite direction.

May, 27, has scored nine tries in 27 appearances for England and leaves Kingsholm after a nine-year spell in which he scored 62 tries for Gloucester in 138 games.

He featured in both of England's Tests on their tour of Argentina earlier this year and played a significant role in their 2017 Six Nations triumph.

"We are absolutely delighted to add to the quality of our backs with the signing of Jonny May," said Leicester head coach Matt O'Connor in comments published on the club website.

"Jonny is a proven international and has played a lot of rugby at Premiership and Test level and will add a lot of experience to the squad.

"He is an out-and-out finisher with an outstanding try-scoring record and I think he is a fantastic addition to the group."

May follows England team-mate George Ford in moving to Welford Road, their arrivals offsetting the departures of JP Pietersen and Peter Betham to Toulon and Clermont respectively.

Leicester also announced the signings of Tonga international back-row forward Valentino Mapapalangi and USA prop Chris Baumann.

Slater, 29, made 136 appearances for Leicester, scoring 11 tries, and was a member of the team that won the Premiership in 2012-13.

"We are really happy that Ed Slater has agreed to join Gloucester," said Gloucester director of rugby David Humphreys.

"I have long been an admirer of Ed. With his leadership, experience and power he can add to our forward pack and we have tried to bring him to Kingsholm in the past previously."

May and Slater will not have to wait long to cross swords with their old clubs as Leicester welcome Gloucester to Welford Road in the third round of Premiership fixtures on September 16.

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