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Artemiev becomes first Russian rugby player in English Premiership (Update-1)

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Vasily Artemiev, the Russian national rugby team's wing, says it did not take him long before accepting an offer to play for Northampton Saints.

Vasily Artemiev, the Russian national rugby team's wing, says it did not take him long before accepting an offer to play for Northampton Saints.

Artemiev, 24, has become the first Russian player to break into the English Premiership after signing a two-year contract with Northampton.

"I hope I will not be the last Russian playing for English clubs. I am very glad because I wanted to play in a European championship for a long time," Artemiev said.

The Russian played for the Dublin University rugby team while he was a student there and since June 2009, he played for Moscow club VVA Podmoskovye. He will join Northampton in July.

Artemiev said, however, that he will return to Russia in August for practice sessions with the national team before the 2011 Rugby World Cup.

Russia will make its debut appearance at a Rugby World Cup when the tournament is held in New Zealand in September and October 2011. Russia is in Pool C along with Australia, Ireland, Italy and the United States.

MOSCOW, March 9 (RIA Novosti) 

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