RUMOUR | Bath and England star Zach Mercer set for shock exit

Bath’s talismanic back-rower Zach Mercer could be a shock departure next summer when his contract with the black, blue and whites expires.

New Montpellier director of rugby Philippe Saint-Andre is understood to be a big fan of Mercer and has told The Daily Mail: “We are watching many players and Zach is one of them.”

The former Gloucester, Sale Sharks and Toulon coach has been tasked with taking Montpellier back to the top of French rugby and will be backed to do so by billionaire owner Mohed Altrad.

Bath are keen for him to stay at the Rec, but they do plenty of high quality depth with Sam Underhill, Tom Ellis, Mike Williams, Miles Reid, Josh Bayliss and Faletau all under contract.

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A strong ball carrier and a formidable force in defence, the back rower has caught the eye of England Head Coach Eddie Jones, making his debut against the Barbarians in 2018.

The 23-year-old is a product of the Bath academy and was promoted to the senior squad from the Academy in 2017.

DID YOU KNOW? His father is former rugby league footballer and coach Gary Mercer, who played for New Zealand. Zach is also of Māori ancestry.


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LIST | 5 international stars who could have played for England, but didn’t

1. George North

North was born in 1992 in King’s Lynn. His father is English from Yorkshire and his Welsh mother is from Anglesey. The family moved to Anglesey when he was aged two and he is a fluent Welsh language speaker.

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