7 June 2022
London Irish’s Henry Arundell has been awarded the Premiership Rugby Land Rover Discovery of the Season, the Club’s first ever recipient of the award.
The coveted award, previously won by the likes of Maro Itoje of Saracens and Exeter Chiefs’ Henry Slade, was presented to the Exiles full-back at the 2022 Premiership Rugby Awards ceremony in London on Tuesday evening.
The award is given in recognition of some of the emerging young talents in the division throughout the season, and was voted for by a panel of media professionals chaired by Paul Morgan, Premiership Rugby's Communications Director.
Arundell was nominated alongside Northampton Saint Tommy Freeman, Harlequins’ Hugh Tizard and Leicester Tigers’ own Ollie Chessum and Tommy Reffell.
The 19-year-old made his debuts in all three of the Gallagher Premiership, Premiership Rugby Cup and EPCR Challenge Cup over the course of the 2021/22 season.
His first outing in an Exiles jersey came in the Premiership Rugby Cup, since appearing four times in the tournament and scoring three tries, including a brace against Leicester Tigers in the semi-final.
In the Gallagher Premiership, Arundell has averaged 13.2 metres per carry and scored two of his seven tries in the domestic league this term, including a trademark chip-and-chase to kick-start a late revival against Wasps at the Brentford Community Stadium.
Perhaps the youngster’s most renowned moment in green arrived in the Challenge Cup quarter-final away to RC Toulonnais, achieving one of his five clean breaks in the tournament to sprint 98 metres to the whitewash in a spirited defeat in southern France.
London Irish Director of Rugby Declan Kidney spoke of his pride in Arundell’s growth, maturation and confidence in his displays throughout his novel season in the first-team.
“Henry has had a good breakthrough season with us, and this award is recognition for his efforts,” said Declan Kidney, Director of Rugby.
“He has worked hard in training and applied himself well in matches and we look forward to seeing his development continue with London Irish.
“Our congratulations go to Henry and his family, who have supported him tremendously to get him to this point.”
Speaking after receiving the gong, an elated Henry Arundell reflected on a monumental last six months since he made his debut against Saracens in the Premiership Rugby Cup.
“Firstly, I would like to thank my family and all the staff at London Irish for helping me get to this point, I couldn’t be happier having received the award.
“The Club have had some amazing moments recently, but we all recognise that we can grow from this year and reach bigger things.
“I know that I was nominated with some very talented guys this evening, which makes the win all the more valuable, and I can’t wait to build on a what has been a very exciting campaign next season.”
Massive congratulations, Henry!