RUGBY: Wallabies coach Michael Cheika has praised Nick Phipps after the Australian scrum-half signed a two-year contract extension with the Waratahs and the Wallabies.
"Nick's dedication to both New South Wales and Australian Rugby has been outstanding over the last five years,” Cheika said.
"That is why we were so keen for him to stay and play his rugby in Australia.
"He played his 50th cap last year and he's just coming into his prime years as a rugby player so his best is yet to come.
"That's what this decision is about, playing the best rugby of his career in Australia and for Australia.”
The 28-year-old has reportedly been the subject of significant overseas interest but chose to stay in his home state.
"New South Wales is where I was born and where I grew up,” Phipps said.
"It means a lot to me, as it does to a lot of the boys in the team, to pull on the Waratahs jersey and represent our home state.
"The season ahead is really exciting. We've got a good mix of players, new energy and experienced leaders, so I'm looking forward to continue to come together as a team and see where we can go.
"I'm also really excited at the opportunity to potentially represent my country again this season.
"I really enjoyed the environment of the squad last year, especially the experience of bringing up my 50th cap on the Spring Tour.
"The Wallabies squad is continuing to grow and I want to be playing some good footy for the Tahs so that I'll have the best chance to run out in the gold jersey later this year.”