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Former Prison Officer Rowan Jenkins is hoping a move from Welsh side Ospreys to Yorkshire Carnegie will help him take the next step in his professional rugby career.
Front rower Jenkins took a career break from the prison service in 2016 to follow his dream of becoming a professional rugby player with the Ospreys. Having trained full time with the Welsh regional side for two seasons and made eleven first team appearances, he believes the chance to play regularly in the Greene King IPA Championship will be the ideal next move for him.
The 26-year-old commented, “I am really looking forward to joining up with Yorkshire Carnegie. I know there is a lot of history at the club having spoken to a few boys down here in Wales who have played at the club. I played with Cieron Thomas at Aberavon and he had plenty of positive things to say about the club.
“It is an exciting to be joining Yorkshire. The club have ambitions to kick on and get back into the Premiership. I am looking forward to training full time in the great environment they have there and doing my best on the weekend as we look to challenge the sides at the top of the table,” added the Carmarthen-born loose head prop.
Educated at Coedcae Comprehensive School and Coleg Sir Gar, Jenkins started his career with Felinfoel and the Scarlets. He was capped by Wales at under-18 level in 2009, the same year he made his Scarlets debut.
He moved to Aberavon in 2010, playing part time and combining his rugby with his career as a prison officer. He went on to make 183 appearances for the club in the Welsh Premiership and British & Irish Cup, including games against Yorkshire Carnegie. Regarded as one of the finest props to ever player for Aberavon he was admired by his team mates and supporters alike, being named the club’s player of year and player’s player in 2015.
In 2016, the chance to train full time with the Ospreys was too good an opportunity to miss and he took a career break. Looking ahead, Jenkins added, “I think playing in the Greene King IPA Championship will be a good test for me. When I have played against English teams in the British & Irish Cup I have enjoyed the physical challenge and I know a lot of the play is set piece orientated, so hopefully I can bring that to my game. I have spoken to Steve Boden quite a lot and he is really positive about me and has good ambitions for me. That gives me confidence and means I know I have made the right decision because he sees where I can fit into the team structure.”