McAlpine relishes life as a pro after landing new deal

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Rising star Robert McAlpine is determined to make an impression on his colleagues at Edinburgh Rugby after agreeing a two-year deal with the Murrayfield-based outfit.

The 21-year old Scotland age group international has spent the past six months attached to the Capital club and has secured a full-time deal after RaboDirect PRO12 outings against Ulster and Cardiff Blues. Looking ahead to life as a professional rugby player, the Dundee-born lock said: “This summer will be my first full senior pre-season and I can’t wait to push on, build my fitness and physicality, put pressure on the other second-rows and see what progress I can make.

“I want to be part of a club that’s going places and Edinburgh Rugby have proved that they’re really stepping up. They’ve competed at Europe’s top table this season – that’s where I want to be and that’s where I want to play my rugby.”

McAlpine was not the only new face revealed yesterday by coach Michael Bradley, with Englishman Perry-John Parker also putting pen to paper on a two-year deal. He joins from English Championship side, Esher. Bradley believes the duo have the essential attributes to help the club build on their European success this season.

He said: “While we’ll continue to refine the expansive, attacking play for which the club is famous, we’re keen to introduce a harder, more aggressive edge to our play. We believe this pair will work tirelessly to lay the platform from which our back division can play.”

The signings will help to offset the departure of Esteban Lozada to Agen in France, while it has been suggested that Sean Cox – who has brought steel to the Edinburgh second row since joining last summer – is a target for Aviva Premiership side Leicester Tigers.