The SRU and London Scottish have today announced a ‘resource focused’ partnership to create a joint performance programme, with the sharing of player and coaching resources at the heart of it.
This arrangement will see Sean Lineen, current International age grade supremo, take on a Director of Rugby role part time. Recently retired Edinburgh stalwart Roddy Grant will also join the coaching staff in Richmond initially until the end of the season, and both appointments are effective immediately.
It’s clear that the relationship with London Scottish has been actively developed by the SRU in recent years, with a number of Glasgow players in particular moving south for short term loans, most recently Rory Hughes. Academy players Robbie Fergusson, George Horne and Jack Cosgrove have also spent time with Scottish this season in an effort to keep them from relegation from the English championship.
This ‘partnership’ is a definite move towards Scottish be a de facto 3rd pro side, a move that has been proposed by a number of rugby writers. This summer there was even talk of Scottish, and their Welsh exile counterparts, joining the Pro 12 league which sounds a little more far fetched given their locations are still under the RFU’s jurisidiction.
London Scottish will continue to be an exiles team but this partnership will now mean more players and coaches can be sent into exile than before. A good thing?