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Bristol boost survival hopes with Alby Mathewson signing

Bristol have boosted their Aviva Premiership survival fight by signing New Zealand scrum-half Alby Mathewson until the end of the season.

The Western Force half-back will join Bristol immediately, having spent nine years in Super Rugby, including stints at the Hurricanes and Auckland Blues.

The 31-year-old's arrival adds another fillip as Bristol bid to climb off the bottom of the Premiership table, following the recent consecutive victories over Worcester and Sale.

"Alby has vast experiene, over 130 Super Rugby caps, so we're looking forward to welcoming him into our environment," said head coach Mark Tainton.

"He's a good communicator and has performed consistently at the highest level during his career.

"It's a crucial period in the Aviva Premiership for Bristol Rugby and we believe Alby's introduction will sharpen our performances at the business end of the campaign."

The four-cap New Zealand playmaker will join a Bristol side still desperate to avoid relegation, especially with Pat Lam joining from Connacht as permanent head coach for next season.

"It's an exciting prospect to play in the Aviva Premiership and to represent Bristol, a team that is clearly on the up and playing with confidence," said Mathewson.

"There's a solid plan and structure in place here. Bristol know where they need to be and what they need to do to stay up.

"Everybody has bought into that culture and I'm fully committed to playing my part in helping the club achieve their goals this season."

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