Hunt extends stay

Reading fans were delighted to hear their influential midfielder Stephen Hunt has agreed a new three-and-a-half-year deal, brokered by World in Motion, keeping him at the Madejski Stadium until the summer of 2011. The Royals rejected two approaches from Sunderland for the 27-year-old Republic of Ireland international during the January transfer window. Stephen told his club’s website: “I am very pleased to sign this new deal and show my commitment to Reading. This club can keep going forward and I want to play my part in that process.” Hunt signed for Reading in 2005 following his release by Brentford and has made 111 appearances for Steve Coppell’s side. Royals’ director of football Nicky Hammond added: “Considering all the speculation surrounding Hunty in recent weeks his professionalism and commitment have been outstanding. “He personifies the qualities that our team will need for the remainder of this season and beyond. He has greatly matured as a player and a person since joining us, and is now an established Premier League and international footballer so we are delighted with this news.”