DEFENSIVE rock Steve Cook admitted he had been relieved to avoid future concern after penning a new three-year deal at Cherries.

Cook's previous deal had been due to expire next summer but now the centre-half will remain at Vitality Stadium until at least 2019.

The Hastings-born centre-back, instrumental in the club's rise from League One, made 36 appearances in the Premier League in 2015-16.

Cook said: “Going down to the last year of your contract is a funny one. When you’ve got a young family, you have to think about them.

“But, fortunately, I don’t have to worry about any of that. I always wanted to stay here and now I will now be lucky enough to do that for another three years.

“I am really pleased to have it sorted before the summer. It means I can go away with no worries and relax before getting ready for pre-season and next year.

“It wasn’t a tough decision for me to stay. My family love it here, I love it here and the club is still growing.”

Cook was speaking to the club website.