Edinburgh have confirmed that they are to release Nic Groom and Sam Kitchen with immediate effect to allow them to pursue contracts elsewhere.

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Edinburgh signed Ben Vellacott earlier this season, with many predicting that Groom would not see a renewal of his current contract as a result.

A statement from the PRO14 side reads: “Edinburgh Rugby have reached a mutual agreement to release scrum-half Nic Groom and hooker Sam Kitchen with immediate effect to pursue playing opportunities elsewhere, with their contracts not scheduled for renewal at the end of the season.

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Groom, 31, has made 22 appearances for the capital club since he arrived from Super Rugby side, Lions, in 2019, and will see out the season in England.

Kitchen, 27, will return to his native Australia having made two appearances since joining from FOSROC Super6 outfit Ayrshire Bulls in June last year.

“Edinburgh Rugby would like to thank the players for their hard work and commitment to the club and wish them all the very best for the next chapter in their careers.”

Groom (31) joined from Super Rugby side Lions and brought a wealth of experience having amassed over 100 appearances for both the Stormers and Northampton Saints.

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The scrum-half was a key man in the 2019 Lions Super Rugby squad that narrowly missed out on reaching the knockout stages of the competition, appearing in 13 out of 16 conference fixtures.

Born in King William’s Town, SA, Groom attended the University of Cape Town where he lifted the Varsity Cup in 2011.

A double Currie Cup winner with Western Province in 2012 and 2014 – for whom he scored 50 points in 69 appearances – the scrum-half broke into the Stormers’ Super Rugby side in 2014, starting 12 out of 16 games for the Cape Town club.

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Groom continued to feature for the Stormers as the Newlands outfit recorded back-to-back third place conference finishes in 2015 and 2016 before joining English Premiership side Northampton Saints at the beginning of the 2016/17 season.

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