Hamish Watson, who burst on to the Edinburgh Rugby scene at flanker last season with involvement in the final nine matches, including five starts, was today rewarded with a contract extension.
And, in a further nod to the future, Edinburgh also announced that young hooker George Turner will also be part of the elite development group at least until 2014 with a view to securing a full-time deal afterwards.
Watson moved north from the Leicester Tigers youth set-up initially on a sevens contract but, after making a mark in the Edinburgh Accies team he helped to a British and Irish Cup place by finishing fourth in the Premiership, caught the eye of Edinburgh coaches.
“I’ve met the targets I set at the start of the season in terms of game time, which is the best way to develop, and that’s helped me develop as a player. Hopefully, with this new deal I can build on that now,” said 21-year-old Watson.
Turner, from Stewart’s/Melville, saw his first season disrupted by a hip injury but he aims to make up for lost time.
The former Macphail Scholarship winner, aged 20, said: “It’s been a frustrating year. I only played three games of rugby in the RBS Premiership last season, so I’m keen need to get fit, get on the field and push for a place in the Edinburgh Rugby squad.”
Forwards coach Stevie Scott, said: “Hamish and George are two young and up-and-coming players in specialist positions with quality international experience at the club to help them develop.
“Both have shown that they have lots of potential but they still have a lot of hard work to do, and can look to the example of recent EDP graduates, like Matt Scott and Grant Gilchrist, who have gone on to become regulars for Edinburgh Rugby and win full international honours.”