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Blues confirm Parks move

Guinness PRO12 Editor

4 Jan 2010

Cardiff Blues have confirmed that they have signed Scottish international outside half Dan Parks from Magners League leaders Glasgow Warriors.

Parks will leave the Glasgow Warriors at the end of the 2009/10 season and join Cardiff Blues in the summer.

Parks was born in 1978 in Hornsby, New South Wales where he grew up playing for the Eastern Suburbs RUFC, West Harbour RUFC, and Southern Districts RUFC. He also represented New South Wales at under-21 level. In September 2001 Dan moved to the UK and joined Leeds Tykes before joining Glasgow Warriors in 2003.

Parks has been a central figure for the Warriors and his ever-reliable boot has seen him finish as top scorer in each of his six years at the club. The 20 points he added in the victory over Edinburgh in the 1872 Cup derby match in December 2009, meant he became the first player in Magners League history to reach 1,000 points. The vast majority of those points – 911 – came from the boot – 121 conversions, 208 penalty goals and 15 drop goals, with the balance made up by 18 tries.

Dan qualified to play for Scotland via his maternal grandmother who was born in Ayrshire, and made his Scotland debut in February 2004 against Wales.

Speaking of the signing, Cardiff Blues Director of Rugby, David Young said: "We are obviously aware of Dan’s qualities as an Outsidehalf from numerous encounters with Glasgow over the years.

"He is a quality player who has often been the difference between the two teams and a real thorn in our side on a number of occasions. His organisational skills and game understanding makes him a real general on the pitch and he has excellent communication skills."

"Dan’s record as a goal kicker speaks for itself, but his distribution skills are also well recognized as he gets his back lines moving. He will certainly further strengthen our options at Outsidehalf going forward next season and will bring the best out of our backs."

Dan Parks said: "I’m looking forward to the challenges ahead with Cardiff Blues. They have a strong squad with a lot of class and international experience and they have some fantastic facilities.

"I’m not moving club simply for a change, but to win trophies and I feel the Blues are capable of that."

Recalling his time at Firhill, Parks commented: "Glasgow has been my life for the past seven years. It’s difficult to leave a place you’ve been for so long, but with so many young talented players coming through, it’s the right time.

"The Glasgow supporters have been fantastic and have really added to the ‘enjoyment factor’ of playing rugby here over the years. I’m looking forward to the challenges ahead with Cardiff but my full focus will remain with Glasgow until the end of the season."

Parks joined the Warriors back in 2003 and his ever-reliable boot has seen him finish top scorer in each of the past six seasons. Following his 100th Magners League appearance on Saturday, his points tally now sits at 1,027 points.

On behalf of the Warriors, head coach, Sean Lineen, added: "Dan’s records speak for themselves. He is a great lad who just loves playing rugby and has loved playing rugby for Glasgow.

"He will be missed. Players like Ruaridh Jackson and Colin Gregor will have learned a lot from Dan and his enthusiasm has rubbed off on everyone at the club.

"He has shown tremendous character to get through some difficult times and I wish him all the very best for the future – apart from the two games we play against Cardiff!"

Parks has won 47 caps for Scotland, and by joining the Blues, he will be based only 1½ miles from where he won his first international cap, playing against Wales at the Millennium Stadium in 2004.