exeter chiefs head coach rob baxter, courtesy and copyright phil mingo/pinnacleHoani Tui and Jason Shoemark have penned new two-year contracts with Aviva Premiership Exeter Chiefs - to the delight of head coach Rob Baxter.

Prop Tui is now into his third season with Chiefs - amassing 66 appearances and six tries - since joining the Devon club from Italian outfit Calvisano in the summer of 2009.

Fellow New Zealander Shoemark is now into his second year at Sandy Park having joined from Super 15 franchise Highlanders. A virtual ever-present since his arrival in England, centre Shoemark - 31 earlier this month - has made 31 appearances, scoring two tries.

“I’m a big believer that your retention policy in some ways is more important that your recruitment,” said Baxter.

“Making sure you keep the right players on board is obviously important for us. I feel we have got a good squad of players and good characters who have played a big part of our on-going success in getting to the Premiership and helping us establish ourselves.

“I don’t want to be making too many changes year on year and these two guys are a big part of things on and off the pitch.”

Tui, 27, has already proven this season how much of a valuable asset he is to the Exeter front-row, having featured both at loosehead and tight-head for the club in both the Premiership and European competition.

“It shows his value to us, he’s not just a good player – at tight-head and loosehead – but his attitude says it all,” said Baxter.

The Chiefs coach added: “We spent a lot of time looking for a player like Shoey.

“We wanted someone with experience, not just of matches but someone used to being a leader, used to playing in different groups of people and bringing the best out of those around them. Shoey ticks all those boxes.”

Happy coach Rob Baxter (pinnacle)

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