Bent arrived at Leinster with a wealth of New Zealand club rugby experience, with Taranaki, and two season of Super Rugby under his belt. The prop from Hawera was drafted into the Hurricanes Super Rugby squad two seasons ago, having turned down an offer to sign with Crusaders, and made 11 appearances for them before making the journey to the Northern Hemisphere.
The Irish qualified front-rower can play at either tight or loosehead prop and built a reputation as a fearsome scrummager having come up through the age grades at Taranaki. He first made an impact for the amber and blacks as a tighthead in the ITM Cup but proved effective on both sides of the scrum in 2011, a season during which his side captured the Ranfurly Shield.
He made his Super Rugby debut against the Highlanders and featured primarily as a replacement with the ‘Canes last season.
Bent committed himself to seeing out a final season with Taranaki and took on a greater responsibility as a ball-carrying forward, paying credit to amber and black coach Colin Cooper for his recent developments.
In November 2012 Michael was called up to the Ireland squad for the first time and made his international debut in the Guinness Series game against South Africa.
In May 2013 Michael was part of the ‘A’ team’s inaugural British & Irish Cup success.