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Loan white Knight to prop up Edinburgh Rugby front-row

Guinness PRO12 Editor

8 Sep 2011

Edinburgh Rugby bolstered their front-row reserves today with the six-week loan of tight-head prop, Shaun Knight, from Aviva Premiership side Gloucester Rugby.

Born and bred in the west country, the traditional heartland of English rugby union, Knight represented England under-20 in the final and semi-final of the 2009 and 2010 Junior World Championships, while plying his trade for the cherry and whites under the tutelage of head coach and former Scotland scrum-half Bryan Redpath.

After the 2010 championships Knight spent four months representing Counties Manakau in New Zealand’s professional domestic ITM Cup (formerly the NPC) before returning to Gloucester.

He said: “I found out that Edinburgh Rugby wanted a tight-head and jumped at the chance to get some game time in the RaboDirect PRO12 and play a high standard of rugby for a well-known team.

“Every young prop wants to develop their scrummaging against experienced front-rows so this loan spell gives me the chance to take on some real quality, international, players. I also like to handle the ball which is perfect because I know that Edinburgh Rugby play an expansive game.

“It all happened really fast but since I arrived I’ve been made to feel really welcome by the players. It’s such a brilliant set-up: the gym, changing rooms, physio room and training pitches are all spot on as you would expect, being Murrayfield, so I’m very happy to be on board.”

Edinburgh Rugby head coach, Michael Bradley, said: “With our entire first-string front-row in the Scotland squad in New Zealand, Shaun [Knight] provides invaluable cover during a crucial six-week period of the Rugby World Cup.

“He’s a very talented young athlete with a bright future in the front-row and has displayed, in his performances for England under-20 and for Gloucester, experience, talent and grit, beyond his years. I’m certain he will be an asset for Edinburgh Rugby in this short but critical time.

“I’d like to thank Gloucester’s rugby operations manager John Brain for his help in facilitating this mutually beneficial loan.”