A former pupil of Belfast Royal Academy, Henderson has represented Ulster and Ireland at numerous underage levels and has progressed through the Ulster Academy system. He played in the previous two IRB Junior World Championships and was one of the standout players in this summer’s tournament in South Africa.
The contract has capped a fantastic few months for the youngster. He made his senior debut for Ulster as a substitute in the RaboDirect PRO12 loss to Connacht in April this year. The following month he marked his first start with a fine individual try against Munster at Thomond Park, a score which came courtesy of an explosive run down the touchline. His third appearance came in the recent 19-48 defeat of Cardiff at the Arms Park, in which he played a huge role.
He said today: “I’m delighted to have signed a new contract with Ulster. I’ve dreamed of being a professional with my home province and it’s fantastic that it’s come to fruition. I’ve learnt a great deal from the coaching staff and senior players here and I can’t wait to continue my development at Ravenhill. There’s a lot of competition in the squad, particularly in the back row, but I want to try and get as many games as possible under my belt.”
Ulster Director of Rugby, David Humpreys, commented:
“Iain is one of the brightest young players in Ireland, he has all the attributes required to be a top class forward and we are delighted to welcome him into the professional set up. We are trying to build a team of home grown players which is capable of competing with and beating the best teams in Europe, and Iain epitomises what we are trying to achieve.
"His performance against Cardiff a couple of weeks ago underlined his massive potential, but also showed that he is able to play at this level now. The exciting thing for us is that he will only get better.”
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