GLASGOW WARRIORS have boosted their back-three options for the next two seasons at least with the signing of Scotland cap Kyle Rowe, who became a free agent following the recent demise of London Irish.
The 25-year-old alumni of Queen Victoria School in Dunblane played club rugby with Falkirk, Glasgow Hawks then Ayr in their league and cup double-winning 2018-19 season. This led to him being picked up by the Scotland 7s squad for whom he played in five World Series tournaments at the same time as being a back-up player for Warriors during the 2019-20 season.
He then had a spell with Edinburgh, playing a single match for the capital club against Scarlets towards the end of the 2020-21 season, before heading south that summer to take up a senior pro contract with London Irish.
Rowe was an immediate hit in Brentford, scoring 10 tries for the club in 23 appearances in all competitions during his first season, which included a hat-trick in a famous 27-point comeback draw against Saracens.
He was rewarded with a Scotland call-up during the 2022 Guinness Six Nations tournament (although he did not feature in the match-day squad) and was then selected to tour South America in July 2022, when he made his international debut as a late replacement for Rory Hutchison in the second Test against Argentina in Salta. Unfortunately, Rowe suffered a serious knee injury (torn anterior cruciate ligament) in that match which sidelined him for all of last season.
Rowe is believed to be already back in Glasgow and is expected to be fit for the start of pre-season with Warriors.
“I’m excited to get stuck in,” said Rowe, who played Scotland Under-20s alongside a number of his new team-mates including Stafford McDowall, Rory Darge and Ross Thompson.
“First of all, though, I want to wish everyone associated with London Irish all the very best with whatever they do next – I don’t think I’d be where I am today without them, because they gave me a chance to prove what I can do. I’ll be forever grateful to them.
“When Glasgow said they were interested, it all fell into place perfectly to be honest. To be able to move back home and be close to family and friends was a no-brainer. It’s a club I know well, from being in the academy and being around as World Cup cover in 2019, as well as from growing up with a lot of the boys here – it’s been a pretty seamless transition so far.
“It’s always good to see boys you know – I’ve not seen a lot of them since 2019, and a lot has happened since then! It’s like not a day’s gone when we get together, though – it’s been brilliant to come in and reconnect with them.
“I’m excited by the potential in this team, too. I watched as the guys got to the final of the Challenge Cup last year, which was such an achievement, and I believe this group has what it takes to go on, get to more finals and hopefully win titles.
“I’m ready to give everything on the pitch for this club. I’ll work as hard as anyone and I just want to get my hands on the ball, get involved and show everyone what I can do.”
Warriors head coach Franco Smith added: “The chance to add a player of Kyle’s quality to our squad ahead of the new season was one that we could not miss.
“He is someone who not only possesses an exciting skillset and real turn of pace, but who brings a real work ethic and desire to give his all for the team.
“We’re excited to work with him as we prepare for the new campaign and we look forward to seeing him show what he can do in a Glasgow jersey.”
Read The Offside Line’s article on Rowe from April 2019, after he scored two tries in Ayr’s Premiership Grand Final victory over Heriot’s here –