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Ryan Wilson to leave Glasgow Warriors

By Ian Cameron
LYON, FRANCE - MAY 07: Ryan Wilson of Glasgow Warriors makes his way out of the tunnel for the second half during the EPCR Challenge Cup Quarter Final match between Lyon and Glasgow Warriors at MATMUT Stadium on May 07, 2022 in Lyon, France. (Photo by Dan Mullan/Getty Images)

After 13 years of being associated with Glasgow Warriors, Ryan Wilson will be leaving at the end of the 2022/23 season.

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Wilson has made 220 appearances for the club, second only to Rob Harley, and both players debuted together professionally in a match against Leinster at Firhill in September 2010.

During his time with the club, Wilson has played a significant role in some of the most memorable moments in Glasgow Warriors’ professional history, including the club’s victory over Munster in the 2015 Guinness PRO12 Final and the first-ever Heineken Champions Cup quarter-final appearance in 2017. In January 2017, he was one of six players to score in the famous 43-0 victory over Leicester Tigers at Welford Road. In January 2022, he became only the second player in the club’s history to reach a double century of appearances when he came off the bench away to Exeter.

From 2017 to 2022, Wilson served as the club captain after being named by Dave Rennie ahead of his first season in charge. Later, he served as co-captain alongside Callum Gibbins and Fraser Brown before handing over the captaincy to Kyle Steyn, the current skipper.

Wilson has also represented Scotland with distinction since his senior international debut against Wales in 2013, earning 50 caps in the dark blue jersey of Scotland. In the memorable 2021 Guinness Six Nations, he came off the bench to help Scotland achieve their first win on French soil since 1999. Additionally, he is the only Scotland A captain to lead the team to a victory in England, having guided a Shade Munro-coached squad to a 13-9 win over England Saxons in Newcastle in January 2013.

“I’m so proud to have had the opportunity to represent this club,” Wilson said. “We’ve been so lucky to have some unbelievable players come through, but some even better men.

“I’ve been through some very low lows and some exceptional highs, and I’m incredibly thankful to have had Bex and the kids with me through them all.

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“Winning the title is definitely right up there with the greatest memories in my time here. It had been such a massive journey to get to that point – make the semis but lose, then make the semis and win, then the final in Dublin that we lost, then finally the semi-final win over Ulster and that final victory over Munster in 2015. Everything clicked that day. I’ll never forget it.

“If people look back and realise how much I’ve poured into the jersey every time, then I’ll be a happy man.”

Head Coach Franco Smith added: “From day one, Ryan made me feel welcome as part of the Glasgow Warriors family.

“His professional and playing approach is of such high quality, and his influence on the playing group has been clear this season.

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“He’s a fantastic person to have within this club environment and his pride at representing Glasgow Warriors is clear for all to see. We wish him all the very best for whatever comes next.”

Al Kellock, Managing Director, said: “Ryan was a pleasure to play alongside from his first step into the professional environment in 2010, and he’s been a fantastic man to work with over the last couple of seasons since I took this role.

“The legacy he leaves behind is one that places his team and his team-mates first. He will go out of his way to make sure his team-mates are well looked after, and he has always given everything every time he has pulled on the jersey.

“I cannot thank him enough for what he’s done for this club and wish him all the best for the future.”

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