Rebels steal promising young NSW talent

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    NSW Waratahs centre David Horwitz has signed with Melbourne, becoming the first player from another Australian Super Rugby club to commit to the Rebels or Western Force since the announcement one of those sides will be cut from the 2018 competition.

    The Rebels on Tuesday confirmed the signing of Horwitz on a one-year deal and say there’s more to come, despite the Australian Rugby Union still to declare which side faces the axe.

    The 22-year-old saw the writing on the wall at NSW with the return of Wallabies centre Kurtley Beale, while the Rebels are losing backs Mitch Inman to French club Oyonnax and Jack Debreczeni to Japan.

    Ahead of Friday’s final match of a disappointing season, against the Jaguares at AAMI Park, Melbourne are continuing to focus on the future.

    “David’s signature is a coup for the Melbourne Rebels and clear indication that this club is building a competitive squad to challenge for the Australian Conference and Super Rugby finals,” Rebels chief executive Baden Stephenson said.

    “David will complement our backline nicely which will boast three current Wallaby squad members and five current Australian U20’s representatives in 2018.

    “David will add versatility, strong competition and experience so we’re pleased that he will continue his promising career with the Rebels and contribute to the club.”

    Horwitz broke the Rebels’ hearts with a game-winning try in the dying seconds at AAMI Park earlier this season.

    He has played the last 10 match at inside centre, appearing in all but one of their 14 matches this season and has been one of the Waratahs’ most consistent performers.

    Horwitz’s signing follows that of Rebels skipper Nic Stirzaker, hooker James Hanson, lock Steven Cummins and prop Fereti Sa’aga last week.

    The clash with the Argentinian Jaguares, who upset the Waratahs last round, will be the last under departing coach Tony McGahan, with the club yet to name a replacement.

    © AAP 2017