It's premature to say I've signed for Nottingham, insists Dan Montagu
DAN Montagu is likely to sign for Nottingham ahead of the new Championship season – but must first confirm the terms and conditions of his departure from Bristol.
Bristol have decided to release No 8 Montagu from his contract, little more than two months after he signed a new deal for the 2012-13 season – and his former club, Nottingham, are eager to snap him up.
But the 28-year-old said reports he had already signed for the Meadow Lane club were premature.
"I haven't finished with Bristol yet, so to suggest I've signed for Nottingham is all rumours," said Montagu.
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"I don't where that has come from, because nothing has been signed off here yet – and certainly nothing has been signed with any other club."
Both Montagu and loosehead prop Mark Irish are understood to remain in negotiations with Bristol regarding the terms of what effectively amounts to a severance package.
Bristol chief executive Steve Gorvett last night acknowledged discussions between the club and their soon-to-be-former employees were sensitive – but vowed to set the record straight on the issue as soon as possible.
Bristol's players returned for pre-season training on Monday, although certain players, including new signing James Grindal, who was involved in Leicester's run to the Aviva Premiership final, will be given additional time off.
Head coach Liam Middleton said: "A couple of the guys get a staggered start. James Grindal finished late with the Premiership final, so he has a longer break. Everyone has had or will get five weeks and we have a couple of guys away on international duty – Fautua Otto is with Samoa and Matt Williams with the England Sevens squad.
"But all the guys were given pretty strict guidelines about their physical shape when returning for pre-season training and we have hit the ground running."
Otto was part of the Samoa squad who won the IRB Pacific Nations Cup in Japan. The 26-year-old came off the bench in his nation's win over Fiji and was an unused replacement in the victory against Japan.