Category Archives: Scotland Rugby
Pictured: (L-R) Sean Lamont, Josh Strauss and Jonny Gray launch the new sponsorship deal at Scotstoun – SNS Group.
Glasgow Warriors have today announced a new sponsorship deal with The Malcolm Group for season 2014/15.
The Malcolm Group is one of the Warriors shirt sponsors this season and will continue to back the club for the new campaign.
The Malcolm Group operates its services nationwide and is one of the UK’s leading providers of logistics, construction and vehicle maintenance services.
As part of the deal, The Group has branded three rigid trailers working within Malcolm Logistics’ secondary distribution operation, which will be delivering loads directly to customers around Scotland.
Each trailer features action shots of Warriors players, with Jonny Gray, Josh Strauss and Sean Lamont on the back doors as part of the branding.
Glasgow Warriors managing director Nathan Bombrys said: “The Malcolm Group is one of the UK’s leading businesses and we are grateful that they have decided to put their support behind Glasgow Warriors.
“The unique lorry branding is something that will certainly make us stand out on the roads across central Scotland.
“This is another major sponsorship deal for the club. We have built a strong relationship with The Malcolm Group over the last couple of years and we’re looking forward to continuing to work with them next season.”
The visually striking cabs and trailers were conceived by The Malcolm Group’s marketing manager, Helen Ryan.
She commented: “Fleet branding is an integral part of our overall marketing strategy. The vision for these rigid trailers was to use their central Scotland route to promote the Warriors with high-impact and, by doing so, increase saliency.
“We can see great benefits from our partnership with the Warriors and we’re looking forward to continuing to work closely with the club.”
A rugby club in Tayside and Fife have started the New Year on a high note winning the first RBS Club of the Month Award of the year.
Perthshire Rugby Club had a 100% performance record in January, with their first and second XVs both topping their divisions, RBS Caledonia Regional League Division 1 and RBS Caledonia Regional League Division 4 Midlands respectively, and going unbeaten in the month.
The club have been applauded for their discipline where they picked up no cards and satisfied the discipline criteria of the award. The club is a Positive Coaching Scotland accredited club.
They have also built strong links with the local primary and secondary schools, including Perth Academy, which is a School of Rugby, and have fielded teams at every age-group including a combined under-18 team with Blairgowrie Rams, through the work of their development officers James Wade and Rory McKay and modern apprentices Beth Doran, Jessica Martin and Declan O’Brian.
Club chairman, Allan Brown, said: “We’re really proud of this award because at the start of the season the committee set a series of targets that included achieving a Club of the Month trophy and a nomination for RBS Club of the Season.
“Over recent months we have been trying to pull the whole club together to make sure we have all been aiming to fulfil the same targets. It has taken a lot of hard work over the past three years but everything seems to be coming into fruition now.
“We have an exceptionally well attended mini section, our midis are performing well and lastly our senior teams have begun to have some success in the leagues and that is almost the final part of the jigsaw.
“The whole club is buzzing and really chuffed about this achievement. It has been a huge collaborative effort and I believe it is because we have been more organised than ever before.”
The second XV notched up more than 90 points in each of their January fixtures. There results were 99-0 v Alloa 2XV on Saturday 11 January and 91-0 v Hillfoots 2XV on Saturday 18 January.
Meanwhile, the first XV beat, Dunfermline, 39-0, Morgan Academy, 13-11 and Mackie Academy, 25-13, in three successive weekends in January. The sides’ success saw a record attendance at training, in January, with just shy of 50 players turning up each week throughout the month.
Furthermore, the work of the development team has seen a series of youth festivals held at North Inch, support given to Glenalmond as they have prepared for Brewin Dolphin matches and a partnership being developed with Perth College, where a Rugby Ready practical course has been delivered.
Brown concluded: “We have set our development team some really specific targets this year, including making sure that our returning youngsters are enjoying playing rugby even more than the season before as well as adding numbers to each of the sections.
“They are doing a really good job and are continually hitting the targets we are setting them.”
In winning the RBS Club of the Month award, Perthshire will receive a commemorative trophy, £1000 to be invested in the development of the club and an automatic nomination for the RBS Club of the Season award to be presented at the annual Scottish Rugby Club Awards Dinner on Friday 30 May. They will also be given a table of ten at the dinner.
Props Ryan Grant and Gordon Reid have both agreed new three-year deals to stay at Glasgow Warriors until at least May 2017.
British & Irish Lions and Scotland prop, Grant has become a mainstay of the team since joining the club in 2010 from Edinburgh Rugby.
The 28-year-old loose-head has made 58 appearances in the RaboDirect PRO12 and 20 in the Heineken Cup and his powerful displays earned him a call-up to the Scotland squad in 2012.
Grant, who made his Scotland debut in the win over Australia on the 2012 summer tour, has gone on to win 15 caps for his country and is in the Scotland squad for the RBS 6 Nations.
He was called-up to the British & Irish Lions squad for the successful series win in Australia last summer.
Ryan Grant said: “I’ve really enjoyed my four years at the club and I’m excited about the opportunity I have in Glasgow.
“There has been so much progress at the club recently, with our support getting bigger each year and our excellent facilities at Scotstoun, so it’s a great place to be.
“We have a really good squad, which gets stronger every season and there is now so much competition for places.
“I’m really looking forward to another three years in Glasgow.”
26-year-old Reid joined the club in 2011 after a number of standout performances for Ayr in the RBS Premiership and has become an integral part of the Warriors pack.
His performances earned him a call-up to the Scotland squad during the 2012 Autumn Tests and he featured for Scotland A in the draw with England Saxons last month.
He has made 44 appearances for the Scotstoun-based side.
Gordon Reid said: “I’m very happy to be staying in Glasgow for another three years.
“I’ve really improved since turning professional and joining the club and I want to continue to learn and develop my game.
“There is a great atmosphere around the club and we have a very strong squad, which is made up of a group of players who all work hard for each other.”
Glasgow Warriors head coach Gregor Townsend said: “It’s excellent news for the club that both Ryan (Grant) and Gordon (Reid) have signed up for another three years.
“Ryan has worked hard over the past two seasons and he’s got his rewards through playing at the highest level.
“His display against the Ospreys last season was one of the best individual performances of the season.
“He delivers what we expect from our props, which is scrum dominance, strong defence, work-rate and accuracy in contact.
“He’s also very good at staying on his feet when carrying the ball.
“Gordon (Reid) has really developed since he became a professional.
“He played very well for Scotland A against England Saxons last month and is getting closer to playing at international level.
“Gordon is a genuine, hard-working player, who takes feedback on board very well and shows a real desire to improve his game.
“He’s at an age where he’ll continue to develop and we’ll benefit from this over the next few years.
“I’m so pleased that both players have committed their futures to Glasgow.”
At the halfway point in their 6 Nations campaign, Scotland’s under-20 players travel to northern Italy today to prepare for their third match of the championship on Friday 21 February (kick-off 6pm GMT, 7pm local).
Looking for their first win, after defeats to Ireland and England, the Scots prepare to meet their Italian counterparts with four changes to the starting XV who took on the English at Netherdale earlier this month.
Try-scorer against England, Chris Dean, and Neil Herron return to Scotland 7s to prepare for the tournaments in Japan and Hong Kong, while last season’s Scotland under-18 captain, Richard Taylor, comes in at centre. Moving from the bench to the starting line-up are scrum half Murdo McAndrew, prop Phil Cringle and flanker Lewis Carmichael at blindside. Buchan Richardson and Ben Vellacott take their place in the replacements, joined by stand-off George Horne.
Head coach Sean Lineen said: “At 10 – an area where we’ve not had a lot of strength in depth – we’ve got Ben Chalmers and now George Horne is back. They’re both young, are great guys to work with and have another year at 20s so there’s a lot of room for them to develop.
“There was certainly an improvement in our performance against England and we’re looking for more in what will be a tough game against very passionate Italians. I have every confidence in our boys, they’re learning all the time and it’s great to see their enthusiasm and commitment. There’s a lot more to come from these lads.”
Scotland under-20 team to take on Italy under-20, Friday 21 February, Stadio Omero Tognon, Pordenone, Fruili-Venezia Giulia kick-off 6pm (GMT), 7pm (local)
15 Ruairidh Young (Edinburgh Accies)
14 Jamie Farndale (Edinburgh Accies/Edinburgh Rugby) **
13 Blair Hutchison (Loughborough/Melrose)
12 Richard Taylor (Melrose/Loretto School) *
11 Damien Hoyland (Melrose) *
10 Ben Chalmers (Melrose)
9 Murdo McAndrew (Clermont Auvergne)
1 Jack Cosgrove (Worcester Warriors)
2 Sam James (London Wasps)
3 Philip Cringle (Edinburgh Accies/Edinburgh Rugby) **
4 Andrew Cramond (Aberdeen Grammar Rugby)
5 Glen Young (Newcastle Falcons)
6 Lewis Carmichael (Melrose) *
7 Tommy Spinks (London Scottish) CAPTAIN
8 Magnus Bradbury (Boroughmuir/Edinburgh Rugby) **
16 James Malcolm (Ayr) *
17 D’arcy Rae (Ayr/Glasgow Warriors) **
18 Chris Barnes (Glasgow Hawks) *
19 Buchan Richardson (London Scottish)
20 Gabriel Carroll (Loughborough University)
21 Ben Vellacott (Worcester Warriors/Hartpury)
22 George Horne (Currie)
23 Sam Pecqueur (Edinburgh Accies) **
* member of Scottish Rugby’s Regional Academy supported by sportscotland Institute of Sport
** Elite Development Player 2013/14
Chris Cusiter will join Sale Sharks next season after five years at the club.
The 31-year-old Scotland scrum-half has penned a two-year deal with the Manchester-based side.
He has made 50 appearances for the Warriors and scored three tries during his spell in Glasgow.
Chris Cusiter said: “It was a big deal for me coming coming back to Scotland and I’ve had a fantastic time at Glasgow.
“Not many players get the opportunity to play in the Top 14, RaboDirect PRO12 and Aviva Premiership, so I’m excited about that.”
Glasgow Warriors head coach Gregor Townsend said: “He’s had a great season after almost a year out through injury and it’s good to see him back playing again.
“I’m sure he’ll do well in the Premiership and we wish him all the best when he leaves us in the summer.
“Chris has still got a big part to play this season, with some some big games left for Scotland and the Warriors.”
Nick Schaschke continually rises above and beyond for his club and this has seen him pick up the RBS Club Volunteer of the Month award for January.
With the category for nominations this month being catering Nick, 57, has been recognised for his “legendary” cooking that is integral to Hamilton RFC.
As well as buffets for hospitality, he cooks every Tuesday and Thursday for the players after training, charging only 50p a meal, and for the teams on match-day.
Nick said: “I do all the catering for the club as well as the photography, laundry, cleaning and the setting out of the pitches.
“Cooking is my hobby, I have had no formal training, but I see it as my way of giving something back to the club. The west development officers often like to have their meetings here at Laigh Bent because they always know they’ll get lunch.
“I have been at Hamilton since I was 17 and was a captain for two years and I have kept my involvement, through cooking, since I retired from playing at 40 because I’m a club man and love to help.
“We’re a family-oriented club and our ethos is about enjoying the game before being successful. But it’s great to receive an accolade for the club.”
In winning the RBS Club Volunteer of the Month Nick will receive a commemorative trophy, a table of ten at the annual Scottish Rugby Club Awards Dinner at Murrayfield on Friday 30 May and an automatic nomination for the RBS Club Volunteer of the Season award.
Jack Cuthbert (pictured above left), the 26-year-old Edinburgh Rugby full-back/winger, has been called up to the Scotland squad preparing for Saturday’s match against Italy in the RBS 6 Nations Championship.
Cuthbert, who was an unused replacement in the corresponding match in Rome two years ago, is promoted from the Scotland A squad who drew 16-all with England Saxons last month.
Cuthbert, capped against Ireland in the World Cup warm-up Test in 2011, has made 14 starts for Edinburgh in his first season with the Capital club, having joined from Bath Rugby.
Meanwhile, scrum-half Grayson Hart, his Edinburgh Rugby team-mate who made his Scotland A debut against the Saxons, will train with the squad this afternoon as Chris Cusiter sits out the session.
Scotland team doctor James Robson said: “Having completed the game for Glasgow Warriors at Cardiff at the weekend, Chris Cusiter subsequently reported to national camp today with a tight calf.
“Given the proximity of Saturday’s international in Rome, Chris will undergo a precautionary scan at the SPIRE Murrayfield Hospital this afternoon in order that we can have a more definitive assessment.”
January’s RBS Try of the Month award goes to Ross Plenderleith of Linlithgow, who displayed some superb individual skills to dart in from half-way during his team’s RBS East Regional Division 1 clash against Preston Lodge on Saturday 4 January.
Plenderleith, 20, an apprentice pipe-fitter, said: “I was more shocked than anything to be picking up the award, I didn’t have the slightest clue my try had been put forward. Luckily I had just finished work or the chances are I wouldn’t have been able to answer my phone and would have missed the call.”
The wing created something out of nothing, using quick feet to beat two defenders on the inside before exhibiting searing pace to outstrip the opposition full-back, and dive over the line behind the posts.
“Lots of people had been telling me to get more involved in the game, so I went looking for a crash-ball and a gap just seemed to appear, which was surprising seeing as Preston Lodge are known for their solid defence.”
Plenderleith, complimented the vision his club have implemented for their future and is hoping they will be able to move forward into the national leagues in seasons to come.
“As a club, we’ve come up with a plan for the coming seasons and hope to eventually climb into the RBS National leagues.
“Our new coach, Dale Lyon, has given us a stability which we lacked before, and has provided the team with a good structure which is helping us to improve week on week.
“Hopefully we can build on the platform we’re creating and keep striving to achieve our long term goal of being in the upper reaches of Scottish Rugby.”
This is the second time this season the West Lothian club have been awarded with the accolade as prop, Adam Kelly, won October’s RBS Try of the Month.
Ross will be put forward for the RBS Try of the Season award to be revealed in May, as well as receiving a trophy for his efforts and a pair of tickets for a home Scotland international game, courtesy of RBS, Scottish Rugby’s principal partner.
To watch the try visit www.scottishrugby.org
[L to R]: Inbound trio Simon Berghan, Allan Dell and Nick McLennan.
Edinburgh Rugby’s work to build for the coming season continued in earnest today with the signing of three new players.
The trio, all of whom qualify for Scotland through ancestry, include prop forwards Allan Dell and Simon Berghan, and outside-back Nick McLennan.
Berghan and McLennan will arrive in the summer on deals to 2015 and 2016 respectively, while Dell is expected to arrive in the coming weeks and will be immediately available for selection until 2016.
Edinburgh Rugby head coach Alan Solomons said: “Allan [Dell] is an outstanding talent. He is a good footballer, is very mobile, has good skills and a fantastic work rate.
“Simon [Berghan] is primarily a tighthead who has played for the Canterbury province in New Zealand’s rugby heartland.
“He’s a big strong boy who has every prospect of cutting it at a higher level.
“Finally Nick [McLennan] is a guy who has played a lot of ITM Cup rugby. He is a good footballer who is versatile, being equally at home at stand-off, full-back and wing.”
Educated at Queens College in Eastern Cape, the promising young prop, who can play on both sides of the scrum, qualifies for Scotland through his grandmother, Joan Carmichael, who was born in Paisley and brought up in Edinburgh.
He has made 13 senior appearances in the Vodacom and Currie Cup competitions alongside his selection for South Africa Schools and every South Africa age-grade en route to lifting the Junior World Championship trophy with the under-20 side in 2012.
He said: “I’m really excited to get to Scotland and start the next chapter of my career.
“It’s a very exciting time at the club, who are building a good brand of rugby, so it’s great to be part of that.
“The whole opportunity is fantastic. Alan Solomons is an excellent coach so it’s great to get the chance to work under him, compete for the chance to play for the club and, longer-term, for the chance to represent Scotland.
“I can’t wait to get out there and start performing.”
Born in Christchurch New Zealand, 23 year-old prop, Berghan – who can play on both sides of the scrum but has a preference for the tighthead side – progressed from Shirley Boys High School to local club Sydenham, who he has captained for the past two seasons.
He earned selection for the provincial Canterbury academy, B team and Crusader Knights, the development squad of the Super Rugby giants, before securing his one-year chance to prove himself in the capital.
He is eligible to represent Scotland through his grandfather, Andrew Davidson, from Stirling.
Simon Berghan said: “I’m delighted to get an opportunity to prove myself at this level.
“It’s a professional contract at a great club that I just couldn’t say no to. Everything I’ve heard about the club and city has been good so I can’t wait to get out there, have crack at it and put my hand up.
“I’ve enjoyed the leadership role I’ve had here as club captain but when I arrive in Edinburgh my priority is just to get my head down and start grafting.
“That’s how I like it. The ball’s in my court and it’s up to me to impress.”
Versatile back Nick McLennan started his rugby development at Waitaki Boys’ High School and North Otago, before his induction into the Crusaders devolopment squad in 2010.
Born in New Zealand, Nick qualifies for Scotland through his grandmother, Jean, from Balmoral and his grandfather Alexander McLennan, who was from Dunblain and served with the Gordon Highlanders.
Equally adept at stand-off, centre and full-back, McLennan was Canterbury Colts player of the year in 2010 and, most recently, featured in the ITM Cup for Hawke’s Bay.
The Lincoln University graduate was a constant feature in the New Zealand Universities XV during his undergraduate years and, after a short spell at Russian club Krasny Yar, is looking forward to plying his trade in Scotland.
He said: “I’m really excited to get this opportunity and can’t wait to get stuck in. June can’t come quickly enough.
“It’s really proud moment for me and my family given my heritage. Having strong links with Scotland definitely made the move even more appealing, while the competitions the club plays in are world class. Being involved in that will be something special.
“I just want to get out there, get as much game time as possible and push for a starting spot, but I’m not getting ahead of myself, there’s a lot of work to do.”
– PLAYER PROFILES –
Allan Dell (21), prop
Born: 16 March 1992 in Humansdrop
Height: 6ft (1.85m), weight: 17st 9lb (112kg)
Honours: South Africa Schools, South Africa U16, U18, U20 (2012 Junior World Championship winner).
Simon Berghan (23), prop
Born: 7/12/1990 in Christchurch
Height: 6’3″ (1.93m), weight: 19st 12lb (126kg)
Clubs: Shirley Boys High, Sydenham (captain), Crusaders Knights
Honours: Canterbury age-grades/academy, Canterbury (ITM Cup)
Nick McLennan (25), outside back
Born: 23/06/1988 in Oamaru
Height: 5ft 9in (1.8m), weight: 14st (89kg)
Clubs: North Otago, Hawke’s Bay
Honours: Canterbury Colts (player of the year, 2010), Canterbury age-grades/academy, Crusaders Knights
Moray Low will leave Glasgow Warriors in the summer after eight seasons at the club.
The 29-year-old prop is set to join English Premiership side Exeter Chiefs on a two-year deal.
Moray joined the Warriors in 2006 and has to date made 144 appearances for the RaboDirect PRO12 side. He has gone on to win 25 caps for Scotland.
Moray Low said: “I’ve really enjoyed my time at the Warriors and I’d like to thank everyone at the club for helping me develop as a player.
“I’m excited about this new challenge, but we still have some very important games, as we look to try and reach the play-offs once again.”
Glasgow Warriors head coach Gregor Townsend said: “We’d like to thank Moray for everything he’s done for the club over the past eight seasons and we wish him well for his next challenge at Exeter.
“He has always been committed to helping the team and is a popular figure within the squad.
“I know he will be determined to end the season and his time at the club on a high and we look forward to seeing him back in a Warriors jersey when he returns from international duty.”