Gloucester confirm six players leaving, including ex-Bath duo Banahan and Garvey
Gloucester have confirmed that a half dozen players – including ex-Bath duo Matt Banahan and Matt Garvey – are now leaving following the end of a 2020/21 Gallagher Premiership campaign that petered out with the pair of match cancellations that ended their hopes of finishing in the top eight to clinch a Heineken Champions Cup qualification place for next season.
Those call-offs left Gloucester finishing in eleventh spot in George Skivington’s first full season in charge and the club has now farewell six players – Banahan, Tom Hudson, Garvey, Willi Heinz, Olli Atkinson and Jamie Gibson – ahead of the off-season.
Chief operating officer Alex Brown said: “We are truly grateful for every player that pulls on the famous jersey for their contribution to our club. Each player that is moving on this season has contributed to the journey we are on as a group, both on and off the field, and we wish them the very best for the future.”
The Gloucester statement listed the names of the departing players added: “Matt Banahan moved to Gloucester from local rivals Bath in 2018. With the ability to play across the backline, in recent seasons he has acted as a mentor to the younger members of the squad and has passed the baton to the likes of Louis Rees-Zammit and Ollie Thorley.
“Tom Hudson joined Gloucester ahead of the 2016/17 season from Leicester… signing a new contract in May 2018. Most recently, he has spent time on loan at Ampthill during the 2019/20 season and his contract at Kingsholm has now come to an end.
"When I was in the Six Nations camp later, he came to two sessions and was shaking everyone’s hand and I just avoided him"
— RugbyPass (@RugbyPass) June 15, 2021
“Matt Garvey’s commitment to the Gloucester squad has been unrivalled. He initially joined on a short-term deal following the suspension of the 2019/20 season. After a string of impressive performances, he signed a new Gloucester deal until the conclusion of the 2020/21 season. Matt has been a true professional.
“Willi Heinz has been a vital operator in recent years who initially joined ahead of the 2015/16 season and has since developed into an England international. Over his six years at Kingsholm, Heinz marked his 100th appearance against London Irish a few weeks ago and he now joins local rivals Worcester.
“Although only brief, Ollie Atkins’ time at Gloucester will be remembered for the energy and enthusiasm he brought to every training session. The Australian has been a true professional in helping prepare the team, even when not involved in the matchday 23.
“A Premiership veteran, Jamie Gibson has passed on some of his vast knowledge of competing in the top flight and after a year with Gloucester, his contract has come to an end. The ex-England forward made seven appearances for the Cherry and Whites.”
'He had brainwashed me… I should have stayed an All Blacks supporter'
— RugbyPass (@RugbyPass) June 6, 2021
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