BACK row forward Jacob Rowan has signed a new contract to remain at Gloucester for two more years.

And he will be very keen to add competition for Matt Kvesic's number seven shirt, especially given his fellow flanker's absence with the England squad for the forthcoming RBS Six Nations tournament.

A former England U20 captain, Rowan is currently in his second season with the the Cherry and Whites, having moved in the summer of 2014 from Leeds (now Yorkshire) Carnegie where he was the club's youngest ever skipper.

His first competitive action in a Gloucester shirt saw him lead the squad to victory in the 2014 Premiership Rugby 7s Series, although an injury picked up in week two of the Premiership season saw him sidelined until the New Year. Upon his return, he was a regular in the first XV squad, making 11 appearances in total, including the European Rugby Challenge Cup Final win over Edinburgh.

He has already surpassed that total this season, making some key contributions to the team's efforts on the field, especially in Europe where he skippered the side against Zebre as Gloucester kicked off their Challenge Cup defence.

Director of rugby David Humphreys said: "Since his arrival at Gloucester 18 months ago, Jacob has developed into a quality Premiership player and gives us real depth at number seven.

"His ability to play across the back row is a real bonus and has made him a key part of our matchday squad this season.

"We're all delighted he has committed his future to Gloucester.”

Rowan said: "Coming to Gloucester was a big decision for me because I'd spent my entire career at Leeds up to that point. But it's been a terrific move and I didn't hesitate when offered the chance to extend my stay. It's a great club, great supporters and I genuinely love playing at Kingsholm.

"I've also learned so much and developed as a player. Being coached by Laurie (Fisher) and working with the likes of Matt (Kvesic) has been brilliant – you're learning something new and improving your game every day.

"There's still a lot to play for this season, and I'm really happy that I can focus on that knowing that my future lies here at Gloucester.”