HENRY PYRGOS has made the switch from Glasgow Warriors to arch-rivals Edinburgh with the scrum-half putting pen to paper on a one-year deal with the capital outfit. He is following in the footsteps of Mark Bennett, who shifted east before the start of last season, and of John Barclay – albeit the Scotland captain made the move via five seasons playing in Wales for the Scarlets.
The 28-year-old has made 147 appearances for the Warriors and was the club’s co-captain during the 2016-17 season. He has also played 29 games for Scotland and has captained the national team on three occasions. However, the emergence of Ali Price and George Horne during the last 18-months has seen his stock fall, and he managed only five starts at club level last term.
Edinburgh were unable to agree a deal with Sam Hidalgo-Clyne to keep him in the Scottish capital after the summer and head coach Richard Cockerill has made no secret of his desire to replenish the depth of his squad by enticing one of the three senior scrum-halves on the Warriors’ books last season to switch allegiances – and Pyrgos has now accepted the challenge.
“I’ve thoroughly enjoyed my eight years at Glasgow. Winning the league in 2015 was an incredible moment and one I’ll always remember. I’d especially like to thank all the players, management and fans for their support over the years,” said Pyrgos.
“I’m really excited by the opportunity to join Edinburgh. The club has a great playing squad and coaching team, so I’m looking forward to being part of it. I believe the club is a great place for me to continue to develop as a player.”
Pyrgos may not be as flashy as Price and Horne, but Cockerill reckons his new signing will bring invaluable leadership to a fairly inexperienced squad.
“He’s a winner and has captained Scotland, so it’s great that he feels Edinburgh is a place where he can compete for further honours with both club and country,” said the coach.
As well as Horne and Price, the Warriors can call upon Niko Matawalu to fill in at number nine if required during the coming campaign, while academy prospect Kaleem Barretto will hope to add to the solitary appearance he made off the bench last term.