Edinburgh to recruit Warriors’ Finn Russell

Finn Russell of Ayr is tackled by Craig Owenson and Cameron Ferguson of Heriot's. 'Picture:  Neil Hanna
Finn Russell of Ayr is tackled by Craig Owenson and Cameron Ferguson of Heriot's. 'Picture: Neil Hanna
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Edinburgh Rugby are set to land Finn Russell, the young Ayr stand off who is attached to Glasgow Warriors, as they attempt to solve a stand off crisis ahead of Saturday’s trip to Ospreys in the Pro12 League.

The Evening News can reveal a move along the M8 for Russell will come after it was confirmed Gregor Hunter would be out for the rest of the season with damaged knee ligaments.

Hunter’s injury comes on top of shorter-term injuries suffered by other stand off options Greig Laidlaw, Piers Francis and Matt Scott leaving Harry Leonard as the only No. 10 left standing in the squad.

For Russell the chance of heavy involvement at Edinburgh could be construed as an early present ahead of his 21st birthday next week.

First noted when helping Falkirk climb the divisions he has been playing at Premiership level with Ayr and it was noticeable last weekend he was being carefully managed when introduced to the match at Heriot’s only after the interval. During the summer Russell benefitted from an extended stay in New Zealand under the Macphail Scholarship scheme and his impending arrival at Edinburgh will ease pressure on full-back Greg Tonks who had been expected to cover stand-off in the event of anything untoward happening to Harry Leonard.

Meanwhile, George Turner believes he is finally getting in position to stake a claim for a debut in Edinburgh Rugby colours.

Despite being bedevilled by injury last season, the 20-year-old hooker managed to gain a contract extension and even made the bench for the concluding Pro12 fixture of 2012-13 without getting the ball.

The new campaign has opened with four consecutive starts in Heriot’s colours and Turner is hopeful that can propel him up the pecking order.

“It’s important to be getting game time after being out for ten months,” he said.

“If I keep putting performances in then maybe I’ll get a chance with the autumn internationals coming up.”