Barkley and Flatman are so important to Bath culture, says Luke Watson
Last month, captain Luke Watson turned down an offer to stay at Bath Rugby, instead opting to return to his native South Africa. But that hasn't stopped him from saying exactly who he believes the club needs to re-sign.
"Two guys who are very important in maintaining the culture at Bath and who are in contract negotiations are Olly Barkley and David Flatman," said Watson. "A large part of the team over the last couple of seasons has been built around them and their personalities.
"You can build a team but you can't build a club. A club takes time. It takes personality and characters. Bath is more than a Barbarian team of superstars.
"It's important that Michael Claassens has re-signed but there are quite a few guys who are part of that vibe that need to be extended."
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A posting by Barkley this week on Twitter will have done little to calm speculation about his future.
"Looking forward to passing on some good news as soon as I can, hopefully in the next few days," he tweeted.