Leinster pair Roux and Cooney go on loan to Connacht

Secondrow and scrumhalf head west to boost Pat Lam’s resources

Leinster are to loan secondrow Quinn Roux and scrumhalf John Cooney to Connacht next season.

South African Roux, who will join on an initial deal up to the end of December,will help boost coach Pat Lam's resources at lock after New Zealander Craig Clarke was forced to retire, having suffered 10 concussions in 22 months

Roux will be with Connacht for the start of pre-season, while Cooney will finish his rehab from a shoulder injury before moving west to help provide cover for Kieran Marmion at scrumhalf.

Speaking about the new deal, Lam said: "This is brilliant news for everyone involved. We're delighted to get the loan deal over the line and again, I'd like to thank the IRFU and Leinster Rugby, especially Matt O'Connor and Mick Dawson, for their support.

"Our squad is constantly evolving and there will be plenty of new faces at the start of the pre-season. Kieran (Marmion), who earned his first Ireland cap at the weekend, has had a heavy load the last two years and there is a need to manage his game time a little more stringently. With the scrumhalf position, John (Cooney) will be pushing for a place along with the incoming Ian Porter as well as Caolin Blade from the Academy so it's great for competition.

“With the unfortunate retirement of Craig Clarke, it certainly helps to have Quinn (Roux) coming in to bolster that area and offer us more selection options.

“We’ve had glimpses of what these young players can do and they are both promising additions to our squad. They are coming from a highly successful team where there is massive strength in depth and huge competition in their positions so this will be a great opportunity for them to push for more Pro 12 and European rugby game time. They are ambitious, hard-working men and hopefully they can make the most of their time here. We’re certainly looking forward to welcoming them in to our team.”