LOVEJOY Chawatama is looking forward to the chance to learn from 103-times capped Australian prop Sekope Kepu as Exiles return to the Gallagher Premiership.

Kepu is one of a host of international stars to be joining Declan Kidney's side for next season, with Chawatam excited by his arrival.

He said: “He’s played for Australia many times, so I will be able to learn from how he details and plans his game.

“It will be interesting to see how he handles his workload on and off the pitch. I’ve learnt a lot from other experienced props at this club, including Petrus du Plessis, Ben Franks and Manasa Saulo, so I can’t wait to learn more from Sekope.”

Having extended his contract for next season, Chawatama also paid tribute to Kidney and head coach Les Kiss, adding: “I am delighted to sign a new contract and to be spending another season with the club. With the signings that we are making, you can see the ambitions being set out.

“Many big signings are being made and it is a great opportunity for me to learn from them.”

“The attention to detail that Declan and Les have is brilliant.

“They communicate with me to explain how to improve my game which has helped me a lot this year. I feel like I’ve come a long way as a player because they have been pushing me all the way.

"I’ve relished the opportunity to work with such experienced coaches and I am looking forward to doing it again next year.”

And after a long Championship campaign, Chawatama explained the importance of the off-season.

He concluded: “It’s always nice to have a little break and refresh yourself when the season concludes. However, I will work hard to be ready for pre-season and I am already looking forward to getting stuck in next year.”

“It’s a dream to play in the top tier of English rugby and get this club back to where it belongs. It’s and exciting time to be involved with the club and time to get to work.”