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Edinburgh Rugby confirm 22/23 leavers



Damien Hoyland (wing), Jaco van der Walt (stand-off), Henry Pyrgos (scrum-half), Nick Haining (back-row), Jack Blain (wing) and Cammy Hutchison (centre) all move on, joining Henry Immelman (full-back) whose move to the Vodacom Bulls was confirmed earlier this season.

They are joined by Lee-Roy Atalifo (prop), Pierce Phillips (lock), Harrison Courtney (prop), Jamie Jack (prop), Nick Auterac (prop) and Bruce Houston (stand-off), all of whom will leave the club at the end of the season.

Elsewhere, four players depart the Edinburgh Rugby Academy as Dan Gamble (prop), Rudi Brown (back-row), Matt Russell (stand-off) and Ben Evans (wing) all move on.

This group of academy players are being actively supported by Edinburgh Rugby to find new clubs, with playing opportunities progressing but not yet finalised.

Head Coach Mike Blair, said: “This is never an easy time of the season. Every player has given their all to the jersey and we can’t thank them enough for their commitment and attitude when representing this club.

“Damien [Hoyland] is a club centurion; a player who epitomises what it means to play for Edinburgh, while the likes of Jaco [van der Walt] and Henry [Pyrgos] have both given so much to the club during their time in the capital.

“Those guys are just to name a few. Every player departing has worn the jersey with pride and that’s all we can ever ask. It’s been an absolute pleasure coaching them.

“Every player moving on has created their own piece of unique history with Edinburgh Rugby. We wish them all the best in their next endeavour.”


2022/23 Edinburgh Rugby leavers


Damien Hoyland | Edinburgh Rugby #1206 | 104 appearances

Edinburgh born and bred, Hoyland joined his hometown club from Melrose in 2014, making his debut against Ospreys at Myreside in February 2015.

The explosive winger burst onto the scene in 2015/16, scoring eight tries in 17 appearances, catapulting Hoyland onto the international stage as he made his first of five Scotland appearances away to Italy in the summer of 2015.

Hoyland’s resolve in fighting back from several long-term injuries has been exemplary and the winger was rewarded for his resilience when he made his 100th appearance for the club against Saracens this season, becoming Edinburgh Rugby’s 38th centurion.

Hoyland will be hoping to add to his 104 appearances for the club before the season end.


Jaco van der Walt | Edinburgh Rugby #1239 | 96 appearances

Van der Walt joined Edinburgh Rugby from Emirates Lions in November 2017 and immediately showcased grit and desire in the number 10 jersey, swapping the heat of Johannesburg for the Scottish winter.

He would soon become a fan-favourite, scoring his first try for the club in the Challenge Cup victory against Stade Francais in December 2017, before enjoying a breakout season in 2018/19, picking up the PRO14 Golden Boot that same campaign.

That form led to a Scotland Test debut against Ireland in December 2020, the first of four caps for his adopted country.


Henry Pyrgos | Edinburgh Rugby #1247 | 82 appearances

Experienced scrum-half Pyrgos signed for Edinburgh in the summer of 2018, having spent eight-years with Glasgow Warriors.

An astute game manager and leader with excellent vision in attack, Pyrgos made 24 appearances in his debut season in the capital, scoring his first try for the club in the Heineken Champions Cup over RC Toulon in October 2018.

Pyrgos made his 82nd appearance for the club in the recent Heineken Champions Cup clash against Leicester Tigers.


Nick Haining | Edinburgh Rugby #1266 | 36 appearances

A player that never fails to give his all when called upon, Nick Haining joined Edinburgh Rugby from Bristol Bears ahead of the 2019/20 season following two years at Ashton Gate.

An explosive ball carrier – who qualified for Scotland through his Dundee-born grandmother – Haining made his Scotland debut against Ireland in February 2020, with Gregor Townsend handing the back-row a start in Round 1 of the Six Nations Championship.

Haining has worked his way back from a run of injuries in recent months to make an impact this current campaign, featuring in 12 matches, including January’s dramatic home victory against Saracens in the Heineken Champions Cup.


Jack Blain | Edinburgh Rugby #1263 | 26 appearances 

When Jack Blain started Edinburgh Rugby’s 2018/19 pre-season friendly against Bath, he became the first player to represent the club born after the turn of the millennium, aged 18.

It wasn’t long before the Scotland age-grade stand-out made his professional debut, starting in a then-Guinness PRO14 match against Benetton Rugby in March 2019.

Blain enjoyed a spell in Edinburgh’s starting XV to start the 2020/21 season, making his first home start against Connacht in October 2020, before grabbing a brace of tries – his first for the club – in the home defeat to Ulster in November 2020.

He has made six appearances so far this season, crossing the whitewash in January’s home victory against Zebre Parma.


Cammy Hutchison | Edinburgh Rugby #1295 | 19 appearances

A product of North Berwick High School, Hutchison made a try-scoring debut for the club in the Guinness PRO14 Rainbow Cup clash against Ulster in June 2021.

A hard-running centre who has developed softer skills, Hutchison captained Scotland at U19 level, while he featured prominently in an impressive Scotland U20 side during the 2016/17 season.

The centre has featured in six games so far this season, grabbing a decisive try in January’s Heineken Champions Cup victory away to Castres Olympique.


Henry Immelman | Edinburgh Rugby #1301 | 25 appearances

Powerful back-three star Immelman joined Edinburgh Rugby from Top 14 side Montpellier ahead of the 2021/22 campaign.

The South African made his Edinburgh Rugby debut against Scarlets in Round 1 of the 2021/22 United Rugby Championship. He then grabbed his first score for the club in the 14-17 URC win over Vodacom Bulls in October 2021, before notching up a brace and earning player of the match in a thumping 56-8 win against Connacht that same campaign.

Immelman will make the move to BKT URC rivals Vodacom Bulls following the conclusion of the 2022/23 season.


Lee-Roy Atalifo | Edinburgh Rugby #1282 | 33 appearances

Fijian international prop Lee-Roy Atalifo joined Edinburgh Rugby during the 2020/21 season from English Championship side Jersey Reds.

Atalifo made a try-scoring debut for the club against Cardiff Rugby at BT Murrayfield in September 2020 and featured in 13 total matches during his debut campaign in the capital.

The Fijian was at his consistent best in 2021/22, making 19 appearances for club and country across all competitions.


Pierce Phillips | Edinburgh Rugby #1302 | 14 appearances

English second-row Pierce Phillips arrived at the club from French Top 14 side Agen ahead of the 2021/22 season.

Phillips made his Edinburgh Rugby debut from the bench against Benetton in Treviso in October 2021 and featured in 12 matches in his debut season in the capital.

The lock has so far crossed the whitewash on one occasion, grabbing a score in the 54-5 rout of Pau in the Challenge Cup.


Harrison Courtney | Edinburgh Rugby #1307 | 9 appearances

Loosehead prop Courtney joined the club on a partnership deal with FOSROC Super6 side Watsonians in the summer of 2021 and made his debut from the bench in the away victory against Dragons RFC that November.

Courtney made his first start for the capital club in the 2021/22 away clash against Glasgow Warriors and has made nine appearances for Edinburgh Rugby to date.


Jamie Jack | Edinburgh Rugby #1318 | 3 appearances

Jack joined Edinburgh Rugby from English Championship side Ampthill towards the end of the 2021/22 campaign.

The loosehead prop made his Edinburgh Rugby debut in November’s away clash against Benetton Rugby at Stadio Monigo.


Nick Auterac | Edinburgh Rugby #1316 | 4 appearances

Former Saracens, Bath, Harlequins and Northampton Saints prop Auterac joined Edinburgh Rugby ahead of the 2022/23 season.

The prop made his debut from the bench against Zebre Parma in October 2022, winning two scrum penalties when he took to the field at Stadio Sergio Lanfranchi, his first of four appearances for the club.


Bruce Houston 

Stand-off Bruce Houston joined Edinburgh Rugby on a partnership deal with FOSROC Super6 side Heriot’s Rugby in 2022, having impressed at the Goldenacre club.

Born in Ballymena, Northern Ireland, the Scots qualified playmaker made his professional debut with boyhood club Ulster, before making the move to Heriot’s Rugby in 2021.

Content & Images from – Edinburgh Rugby


Squad Update | Munster Prepare For Cardiff At Thomond



The Munster squad are preparing at the HPC ahead of Saturday night’s URC Round 13 clash against Cardiff at Thomond Park.

The game kicks off at 7.35pm with tickets from €20 available here.

In player news, Tadhg Beirne, Jack Crowley, Conor Murray, Calvin Nash and Peter O’Mahony have all returned to the HPC after helping Ireland to the 6 Nations title.

On the injury front, Academy back-row forward Ruadhán Quinn suffered a hand injury against Ospreys on Friday night and will be sidelined for a number of weeks.

Oli Jager and Fineen Wycherley have started their rehab following minor procedures for respective knee injuries.

Alex Nankivell is completing the RTP protocols and his availability will be determined later this week.

Simon Zebo was unavailable for the Ospreys game due to a low-grade hip injury and is due to return to training this week.

Continuing to rehab: Dave Kilcoyne (shoulder), Diarmuid Barron (foot), Roman Salanoa (knee), Jean Kleyn (knee/eye), Paddy Patterson (knee), Liam Coombes (shoulder), Patrick Campbell (shoulder).

There were 15 Munster players in AIL action at the weekend.

In Division 1A, Fionn Gibbons and Chris Moore helped Young Munster beat Dublin University with Gibbons among the tries.

Mark Donnelly lined out for Cork Constitution as they were beaten by Terenure College.

Kieran Ryan, Darragh McSweeney and Daniel Okeke couldn’t prevent Shannon falling to a defeat to City of Armagh.

In Division 1B, Colm Hogan, Jack Oliver, George Hadden, Max Clein, Cian Hurley and Jack Daly helped Garryowen to a win over Queen’s University. Hogan, Clein and Cronin were among the tries with Oliver kicking a conversion.

Scott Buckley and Andrew O’Mahony were in action for UCC as they lost to St Mary’s College.


URC Round 13: Saturday, March 30

Munster v Cardiff Rugby, Thomond Park, 7.35pm; Buy tickets here

Women’s 6 Nations Round 3: Saturday, April 13

Ireland v Wales, Virgin Media Park, 4.45pm; Buy tickets here

URC Round 16: Saturday, May 11

Munster v Connacht, Thomond Park, 5.15pm; Buy tickets here

URC Round 18: Saturday, June 1

Munster v Ulster, Thomond Park, 5.15pm; Buy tickets here

Images & Content from Munster Rugby

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Squad Update | Preparations Continue For Ospreys



The Munster squad are continuing preparations ahead of Friday night’s URC Round 12 clash against Ospreys in Swansea (7.35pm).

On the injury front, there is good news for John Hodnett (finger), Jack O’Donoghue (knee) and Simon Zebo (knee) as they all return to training this week.

Oli Jager (knee) and Fineen Wycherley (knee) are both due to see specialists this week for possible surgery.

Alex Nankivell is following the return to play protocols following a head injury in training last week.

On the international front, Craig Casey and Jeremy Loughman have returned to the squad after Ireland’s 6 Nations triumph at the weekend.

Continuing to rehab: Dave Kilcoyne (shoulder), Diarmuid Barron (foot), Roman Salanoa (knee), Jean Kleyn (knee/eye), Paddy Patterson (knee), Liam Coombes (shoulder), Patrick Campbell (shoulder).


URC Round 13: Saturday, March 30

Munster v Cardiff Rugby, Thomond Park, 7.35pm; Buy tickets here

Women’s 6 Nations Round 3: Saturday, April 13

Ireland v Wales, Virgin Media Park, 4.45pm; Buy tickets here

URC Round 16: Saturday, May 11

Munster v Connacht, Thomond Park, 5.15pm; Buy tickets here

URC Round 18: Saturday, June 1

Munster v Ulster, Thomond Park, 5.15pm; Buy tickets here

Images & Content from Munster Rugby

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British & Irish Lion to join Glasgow Warriors



Sutherland to join Glasgow Warriors

Glasgow Warriors can confirm that Scotland prop Rory Sutherland will join the club this summer.

The British and Irish Lion joins the Scotstoun-outfit from French side Oyonnax, making the move to Scotstoun on a two-year deal as Franco Smith’s squad continues to take shape.

The confirmation of the loose-head prop’s move to Glasgow also comes on the eve of his involvement in Saturday’s Guinness Six Nations clash with Ireland in Dublin, where he is in contention to win his 30th cap for Scotland, part of the match day squad.

The 31-year-old Sutherland will bring a dynamic ball-carrying presence to the Warriors in addition to a solid platform at the set-piece.

After making his debut for Edinburgh in 2014, the prop went on to make 91 appearances in the capital before a summer switch to Worcester Warriors in 2021.

A short-term stint with Ulster followed after Worcester’s demise in 2022, running out on 12 occasions for the Irish province.

Sutherland’s form for Scotland across the 2020 and 2021 campaigns saw him selected for the 2021 British and Irish Lions tour to South Africa, joining future Glasgow team-mate Zander Fagerson amongst the front-row options.

He became the first Scottish prop to represent the invitational squad since the late Tom Smith when selected for the first Test, playing just under an hour in the 22-17 victory over the Springboks.

Sutherland said: “The past couple of years have been tough since I had to leave Worcester. I’ve been at a few clubs and I haven’t had the consistency I’d have liked in my game. This move to Glasgow, and back to Scotland, offers me the chance to work on getting that back into my rugby.

“Glasgow is a really successful team, so to be offered the chance to come to Scotstoun is attractive for any player. For me, it allows me to come back home, and be closer to my family, which will work wonders for me.

“I’ve gotten close to some of the Glasgow players while in camp with Scotland and they talk highly of Franco and the culture in the club. I’m looking forward to that and getting back to the homeland!”

Head Coach Smith added: “We are pleased to be able to add a prop of Rory’s calibre to our squad ahead of next season.

“His qualities will make him a real asset to our playing group, as we continue to develop our strength in every position.

“We look forward to seeing him in action at Scotstoun over the next couple of seasons and we know that the Warrior Nation will welcome him to our club.”

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