Guinness PRO12: Trio to leave Glasgow Warriors in summer
Prop Jon Welsh and assistant coach Shade Munro set to move on as hooker Dougie Hall announces his retirement
Glasgow Warriors have confirmed that hooker Dougie Hall, prop Jon Welsh and assistant coach will all leave the club at the end of the season.
Hall, 34, is set to retire and take up a position with McCrea Financial Services, one of the club’s sponsors, while Welsh, 28, will join Aviva Premiership club Newcastle Falcons on a two-year deal.
With five games to go we’ve put ourselves in a good position in the league, but there is still a lot of rugby to be played, and I believe we can go one step better than last season.
Shade Munro aims to leave the Warriors on a high
The club has also chosen to move on without forwards coach Munro, who has been at the club for 12 years, adding fuel to the fire that club captain Al Kellock is set to retire and take up a coaching role with the PRO12 league leaders.
Munro, a former lock who has worked under Hugh Campbell, Sean Lineen and current head coach Gregor Townsend, has not announced where his future lies, but admitted his pride in seeing the Warriors develop into one of European rugby’s top clubs in recent years.
“I’ve really enjoyed my time at the club and being part of something very special,” said Munro
“I’ve witnessed the club growing and developing into one of the top sides in Europe, now regularly competing for the PRO12 title, and that is something I’m extremely proud of.
“With five games to go we’ve put ourselves in a good position in the league, but there is still a lot of rugby to be played, and I believe we can go one step better than last season.”
Welsh (pictured above), who has made 106 appearances for the Warriors since making his debut in 2008, has set his sights on a new challenge in the Aviva Premiership as he enters his peak years.
Jon is a player who comes with a great pedigree and has been a key feature of a Warriors team that is a consistent force in the PRO12.
Falcons director of rugby Dean Richards on Jon Welsh
The versatile prop, who has four Scotland caps to his name, scored his first international try in their 26-23 defeat to Wales in the RBS 6 Nations at the end of February.
And Welsh is looking forward to joining the ambitious Falcons lead by Dean Richards, who recently agreed a new contract with the Kingston Park outfit to continue their long-term project that is starting to see a number of exciting young players emerging in the first team.
“Jon is a player who comes with a great pedigree and has been a key feature of a Warriors team that is a consistent force in the PRO12, and one that will add further quality to our front row options,” said Richards
“He looked very sharp in the Six Nations and hopefully will add to his four caps to date by impressing out in a Falcons shirt.
“At 28, he is starting to approach his peak years as a prop, and I am sure with the experience he has already amassed will help him be a key part of our plans going forward.”
Hall, who has 42 Scotland caps to his name, has been an influential player since joining the Warriors from Scottish rivals Edinburgh Rugby in 2007.
I look forward to supporting the Warriors from the stands and seeing Glasgow become the top team in Europe.
He helped the club to reach the PRO12 semi-finals in 2010 and 2012, and started in the PRO12 final against Leinster last May.
Only Connacht duo John Muldoon (185) and Michael Swift (183), and Scarlets prop Phil John (178), have made more appearances than Hall in the PRO12, with his last outing against Zebre on 6 March equalling former Warriors, Cardiff Blues and Connacht outside-half Dan Parks’ 171 PRO12 appearances.
“I’ve really enjoyed my time as a professional rugby player,” Hall said.
“To see the club progress as much as it has done over the last eight years and to have been a part of that has been fantastic.
“It’s great to be able to finish my career at the same club where it all began.
“I’m excited about the new challenges that lie ahead in my new career with McCrea Financial Services.
“I look forward to supporting the Warriors from the stands and seeing Glasgow become the top team in Europe.”
The announcement takes the number of summer departures from Scotstoun Stadium up to six with scrum-half Niko Matawalu and wingers DTH van der Merwe and Sean Maitland also heading to pastures new.