Glasgow Warriors have made their second significant signing in as many days, with confirmation that Newcastle Falcons lock Tim Swinson is to move to the Scotstoun-based club for the start of season 2012/13.
Coming hard on the heels of the announcement that Tonga Rugby World Cup star Viliami Ma’afu has also been secured for the coming campaign, the news represents a further major boost to the Warriors’ forward planning.
Swinson is one of the most highly rated and consistent locks in the English Premiership, where he has racked up 82 appearances since making his Falcons debut in 2007.
The 25-year-old’s fantastic form in 2010/11 saw him named Newcastle Player of the Season, and he has continued to impress during the current campaign.
He is the Warriors’ third confirmed new signing for next season, with Sean Lamont having pledged to return to the club where he made his name. Glasgow have also re-signed 12 leading players in recent months.
Swinson, a one-time Australian Grand finalist with Sydney University, is eligible to play for Scotland, courtesy of a maternal grandmother from Glasgow. He has signed a two-year contract with the Warriors, taking him up to the end of May 2014.
The second row told www.glasgowwarriors.org: “I’m really pleased to have signed for a club with the ambition and bright future of Glasgow Warriors.
“They’ve made real progress in the RaboDirect PRO12 this season, and with the signings and re-signings they’ve made, they’re clearly very determined to build on that and achieve success.
“I’m thoroughly looking forward to throwing myself into the cause come the summer, but for now it’s about focussing on helping Newcastle Falcons secure their Aviva Premiership status.
“There is a great team environment at the club, and everything I’ve seen and heard about the Warriors suggests that’s very much the case in Glasgow as well. It’s going to be a really positive place and team to be part of. I leave the Falcons on good terms and the move has been handled well on both sides.”
Head coach Sean Lineen welcomed Swinson’s signing, saying: “We see this as a very positive step in our planning for next season. Tim is a player who has consistently stood out in one of the toughest testing grounds for a second row forward, the English Premiership.
“He’s a battle-hardened competitor who relishes the physical side of the game, and he’s not one for taking a backward step with the pressure’s really on.
“We’re delighted to have him on board. He’ll give us another great option in an area of the team where we’ve already got a good number of guys challenging for jerseys, and it’s another strong piece in the jigsaw for what should be a really exciting chapter in the club’s history.”
Warriors managing director Nathan Bombrys said: “This is a huge week for everyone at Glasgow Warriors, with Leinster coming to Firhill on Saturday for a very significant game in the RaboDirect PRO12.
“Everyone is fully focussed on achieving success this season, but it’s vital that we also make plans to maintain our momentum going forward, and the arrival of Tim Swinson is a major part of that.
“He’s a quality lock who has a real appetite to progress. He’s impressed us with how keen he is to come here, and we’re very happy to have secured his signature.”
News of Swinson’s signing comes just four days before Glasgow Warriors put their RaboDirect PRO12 play-off aspirations to the test in a vital clash with table-topping Leinster at Firhill (kick-off 6pm).
Supporters who buy one adult and one under-18 ticket for the game online by midnight tonight will get another under-18 ticket absolutely FREE.
The offer is valid for multiple purchases i.e. if fans buy one adult ticket and two under-18 tickets, they’ll get another TWO under-18 tickets absolutely FREE.
See www.glasgowwarriors.org for details and to book.
Adult season ticket holders can also bring an under-18 to the match for FREE, using Voucher B in their season ticket book.
The support we receive from rugby clubs throughout Glasgow and the west is hugely appreciated by everyone at the Warriors. To say thanks, we're offering every adult who buys a ticket through their own club's website for the Leinster game another FREE adult ticket.
The deadline for this offer is also midnight tonight.