England international back-rower Mark Wilson has pledged his long-term future to Newcastle Falcons by signing a new four-year deal with the Kingston Park club.
The 29-year-old has made 221 appearances for the Falcons and enjoyed a breakthrough year with the national side, being voted England’s Man of the Series during the recent autumn internationals.
A product of the Falcons’ academy, the Cumbrian spoke of his delight after committing his long-term future to his one-and-only professional club.
Wilson said: “This is the club that I love and I’ve been here for 14 years of my life, so it’s great to be able to extend that. My family is here, I class Newcastle as home and I enjoy being part of the whole club.
“We get really well looked after here as players, the off-field support is great and I enjoy the coaching every day. It means I can just focus purely on getting things right on the field, and that’s what I’m looking forward to doing over the next four years.”
Determined to help the Falcons rise up the Gallagher Premiership after last season enjoying a 20-year-high league position and featuring in three semi-finals, Wilson said: “We had a fantastic season last time round, and while this season has been disappointing I’m determined to help play a big part in getting us back up to where we know we can be.
“I’ve got absolute faith that we will turn things round this season in what is an incredibly tight league, and it will just take a win or two to get that confidence flowing again. We’re working hard in every department and I fully believe we have it in us to push back up the Premiership table, and Kingston Park is definitely where I want to be.”
Newcastle Falcons director of rugby Dean Richards was similarly enthusiastic about the news, saying: “Mark is an outstanding player operating at the very top level of the international game, and the fact that he sees his future here at Newcastle Falcons speaks volumes about the club.
“As well as his tremendous playing ability Mark brings real leadership to the group, and the way he conducts himself day to say serves as an outstanding example to the many talented players coming through our academy system.”