JAMIE BHATTI’s long-term goal of becoming a commercial pilot will not be realised for at least two more years after the 30-year-old loose-head prop signed a contract extension with Glasgow Warriors today which will keep him at the Scotstoun club until at least the summer of 2027.
“It was a very easy decision [to re-sign], really,” said Bhatti, who was named Scotland’s Six Nations training on Tuesday “When the discussions first started over the summer, it was a no-brainer to be honest. I really enjoyed my season under Franco and the coaches last year, and I’m really happy with where I am. That’s the main thing for me – I love being part of this club.
“I wouldn’t say there’s ever an easy day at work here – training is tough! – but this club makes it so easy to enjoy your rugby. Glasgow’s home for me, and I never really wanted to look elsewhere.
“For me personally, I want to make sure my performances are of as consistently high a level as they can be. I want to play well and help this team win some silverware, and I truly believe we can do that.”
Head coach Franco Smith added: “Jamie is someone for whom representing this club means a great deal, and we’re very pleased that he has renewed his contract with us.
“He strives to become better every day, and drive to become the best version of himself is a real asset to this club.
“He’s someone who gives his all every time he runs out for both club and country, and we look forward to continuing to work with him over the next couple of seasons.”
Bhatti made his debut for Warriors in November 2016 as a relative latecomer to the professional game, having proved himself playing for Melrose in the Premiership under current Scotland forwards coach John Dalziel.
He made his Scotland debut against Samoa in November 2017, and played 47 times for Warriors during his first stint at the club, helping them to two European quarter-finals and the 2019 Guinness PRO14 Final at Celtic Park.
However, he was deemed surplus to requirements behind Oli Kebble and Alex Allan by then Glasgow head coach Daver Rennie, and accepted an opportunity to move east to Edinburgh in the summer of 2019.
That proved a fairly miserable experience playing under Richard Cockerill so after 18 month he joined Bath on a short-term deal, before returning to Warriors ahead of the 2021-22 campaign and hitting the best form of his career over the last two and a half years.
He was nominated for the McCrea Financial Services Player of the Season prize for 2022-23 and earned selection as one of three loose-head props in the Scotland squad at the recent World Cup in France.