Richie Gray re-commits to Glasgow Warriors

Veteran second-row praises influence of Franco Smith since arriving as head coach at club

Richie Gray has signed a contract extension with Glasgow Warriors. Image: ©Craig Watson -
Richie Gray has signed a contract extension with Glasgow Warriors. Image: ©Craig Watson -

RICHIE GRAY has signed a contract extension which will keep him with Glasgow Warriors for the “foreseeable future”, understood to be two years. The 32-year-old has hit a purple patch of form this season under Franco Smith at club level, which has translated into performances with the national team, although he is an injury doubt for Scotland’s final match of the Six Nations against Italy on Saturday after popping his rib against Ireland last weekend.

Having initially made his Warriors debut against Ulster during the 2008-09 season, Gray quickly became one of the northern hemisphere’s pre-eminent second-rowers, making his senior Scotland debut against France in the 2010 Six Nations, and winning a Test cap for the Lions during the 2013 tour to Australia.

He had moved to Sale Sharks the summer before the Lions tour and then had stints with Castres between 2013-16 and Toulouse between 2016 and 2020, during which time a combination of fitness issues and family commitments meant that he became a less regular contributor to the Scotland squad, twice turning down an invitation to be part of the 2019 World Cup training squad. He went 18 months without a cap before returning to the fold during the 2022 Autumn Nations Series.

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He returned to Scotstoun in the summer of 2020, and  was presented with The Malcolm Group Leadership Award at the 2021-22 Awards Dinner, but it is really this season under Smith that he has started to hit the same sort of performance levels as we witnessed at the start of his career.

“The main factor for me staying is that my family is happy and I’m happy, simple as that,” said Gray. “I can’t speak highly enough of the environment at the club, as it ensures everyone involved pushes hard to be at their best on and off the park.

“I’m really enjoying playing under Franco [Smith], too. He’s a big character and the team has bought into his philosophy of attacking rugby which suits Glasgow Warriors. He has challenged me as a player, which I believe has brought the best out of me.

“If we can continue to grow in other areas we will be able to challenge for titles, and that’s something I’m really looking forward to being a part of.”

Smith added: “Richie is someone who brings an immense amount of experience and quality to our squad.

“His expertise at the lineout is a significant asset to us on the field, whilst his dedication to driving our standards to a higher level makes him a great role model for our young players coming through.

“We enjoy working with him day in, day out, and we look forward to seeing him continue to give everything to this club.”

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About David Barnes 3288 Articles
David has worked as a freelance rugby journalist since 2004 covering every level of the game in Scotland for publications including he Herald/Sunday Herald, The Sunday Times, The Telegraph, The Scotsman/Scotland on Sunday/Evening News, The Daily Record, The Daily Mail/Mail on Sunday and The Sun.


  1. Richie has never played for Toulon. Toulouse, yes.
    Delighted he has re-signed for Warriors , playing better than ever

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