The last of Connacht’s major new recruits for next season was completed on Tuesday when former Scottish international Dan Parks agreed to join the Irish province.
The 33-years-old, who retired from international rugby after Scotland’s defeat to England earlier this month, will join Connacht on a two-years deal. He visited Connacht headquarters two weeks ago to meet with the coaching staff before signing on Tuesday.
Connacht already boast three outhalves in former Ulster player Niall O’Connor, New Zealander Miah Nikora, and former Wales u-20 player Matthew Jarvis, but Parks is expected to bring “an extra layer of experience to the squad”.
Parks comes to Galway from the Cardiff Blues - one of the four Welsh regions currently looking to cut their wage bill - after seven seasons with Glasgow. The Celtic League’s record points scorer with 1,322 and the top points scorer each season for Glasgow from 2003/04 to 2009/10, it is that goal-kicking prowess which Connacht have identified as essential to improve their Celtic league standing. In addition to his international career with Scotland, the Australian born outhalf also represented New South Wales at u-21 level and played in the English premiership with Leeds during the 2001 season.
Parks believes Connacht is a club on the up. "There is a fantastic mix of youth and experience at the club and for me I am really excited about the future of Connacht rugby. I am very happy to be joining a club which I believe is on the up and has a very bright future ahead."
Elwood said Parks’ signature was a huge boost for the province. "Having someone of his experience, both internationally with the number of caps he has and in the league as the highest points scorer of all-time, is a massive bonus. As a seasoned international we are confident he will bring a huge amount of experience to our team.”