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Homegrown duo Bailey and Ojomoh commit futures to Bath Rugby

15 February 2022

Bath Rugby is delighted to announce homegrown duo Orlando Bailey and Max Ojomoh have signed two-year extensions with the Blue, Black and Whites. 

The pair, who have both risen through the club’s pathway, have been rewarded for their fine form in 2021 and become the latest in a long line of local talent to graduate from Senior Academy to the Senior Squad.


Director of Rugby Stuart Hooper said: “To have two young, talented pathway players commit their future to the club is extremely significant.

“Orlando and Max have both been given their opportunity over the past year and have taken it with both hands. Their work ethic has been incredible, their attitude has been exemplary, and they have pushed hard for selection every week. That is a credit not only to them but to the pathway coaches who have helped develop them to this stage of their career. 

“They have both been involved in international camps and have proved their worth. We are thoroughly looking forward to them continuing their journey in Blue, Black and White.”

Academy Manager Craig Lilley added: “The end goal for us as an Academy is to ensure boys graduate to the senior squad and add value by not only the way they play, but how they are as people and the influence they have on the younger players coming through the pathway.

“Orlando has always been a huge talent and is an exceptional performer. He is so diligent around the game and takes a great deal of care in his attempts to maximise his development, both on and off the field. He has the ability to get the best out of those around him through the way he problem solves and communicates with his teammates. It has not been surprising to see him transition to the senior squad and bring his impressive skillset to the environment.

“Max has a massive energy and enthusiasm for the game; he just loves rugby. He played for University of Bath in the BUCS League during the season before Covid, an opportunity which has massively helped his transition to the senior game. Like Orlando, we have always seen him as someone with huge potential. He possesses great passing skills and also an ability to consistently get over the gainline. To have that double threat is very exciting and we are now starting to see this on a regular basis.

“Orlando and Max have fully utilised the experiences presented during their exposure to senior rugby over the past year and are extremely deserving of their graduation to the Senior Squad. We are really excited to see how they progress in the years to come.”



Born in the region, Bailey’s affection for Bath Rugby stretches to his days as a junior, playing rugby in the garden with his siblings in a Blue, Black and White jersey and attending games at the Rec with his dad and brother. 

From delicate footwork, great special awareness and creative kicks, the 20-year-old former Beechen Cliff School pupil has displayed a wide range of skills throughout his journey in the Bath Rugby pathway and is now flourishing on the senior stage.

Earning his opportunity due to injury at the backend of last season, Bailey has shown his capabilities to lead as the starting 10. He has shown a real dedication to the detail needed to improve his game and his measured, calculated approach in match situations has seen him become one of the Premiership’s shining talents in 2021/22.

Recognised as a multi-talented, adaptable young man, who helped England Under-20s to U20 Six Nations title-winning success in 2021, the fly-half was named in Eddie Jones’ 2022 Six Nations squad and fully relished the deserved opportunity to enter a new environment and sponge information from some of the country’s best.

With 23 club games under his belt to date, Bailey is committed to furthering his rugby knowledge to achieve things with his boyhood club.


“I have supported Bath since before I can remember,” Bailey said.

“I have learnt so much in my first 18 months here and look forward to growing more as a person and player in the seasons to come.  

“I love the city and the group of players here and I am desperate to push on and achieve big things in the future as a squad that is a relatively young squad now.”



Ojomoh’s deep-rooted connection with Bath Rugby dates to before he was born with father, Steve, playing for the club in the 1990s, but he has now forged his own path, making huge strides on the field from inside centre this season.

An exciting player who consistently has supporters on the edge of their seats every time he receives the ball, the 21-year-old debuted for his hometown club in the Premiership Rugby Cup and worked relentlessly hard thereafter to develop his game and earn his next opportunity in senior colours. 

That came in form of a Gallagher Premiership debut at London Irish and his maiden European outing followed a week later against Zebre. He finished the campaign with two 80-minute performances which led to England recognition as Eddie Jones called him up to his summer training squad.

This term, Ojomoh’s ball-playing skills and excellent attacking play have been viewed wider afield with the return of fans and he was voted by the RPA’s Premiership MVP for October.

Like Bailey, Ojomoh is a key component of Bath Rugby’s future, and he is relishing the chance to represent the club and the city for years to come.


“I’m truly happy to re-sign here for another two years,” the centre said.

“This is my hometown club; I’ve come up through the Academy here and to be given a lot of game time this season to show what I can do has been a blessing. 

“With the quality of players and staff here, it was an easy decision to extend my time at a club I love. With the recent changes at the club, I believe we are building towards a bright future which I’m excited to be a part of.”


 

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