Manu Tuilagi re-signs with Leicester Tigers, shuns move to France

Leicester Tigers centre Manu Tuilagi has agreed a new contract which will help secure his future with England after widespread speculation he could lose his international status in a big-money move to France.

The Samoa-born back was weighing up a move to Top 14 club Racing 92, but has shunned the lucrative option abroad to stay in the Premiership and retain his eligibility to play for England.

Players who are not home-based are not selected for international duty under RFU policy, but Tuilagi's international future now looks bright with this new deal coming on the back of a superb Six Nations return.

Tuilagi has started all four of England's matches this year and capped off a fine campaign with two tries against Italy on Saturday.

He has now reached 31 international caps after being recalled by head coach Eddie Jones in November following two and a half years in the international wilderness.

The 27-year-old will now remain with Leicester Tigers, the club where he came through the academy.

"This is a massive club and it means a lot to me and my family," Tuilagi said.

"I love the club and I want to repay the loyalty they have shown me in my time here. We are all behind [head coach] Geordan Murphy and his ambitions for the team, and I'm very passionate about playing my part in bringing back the success we all expect at such a massive club.

"This was a big decision for me to make but I am very happy to be able to stay here, I have a lot of friends here, my family is happy here and the club means a lot to me."

Tigers head coach Geordan Murphy said: "Manu is a world-class player with a real X-factor about his game and anyone would want him in their team. He's been here a long time, his heart is here and we're all delighted that he wants to stay.

"He is at his physical peak as a player at 27, he is a leader within the squad and we look forward to seeing many more big performances from him in a Tigers shirt."