Edinburgh secure Jamie Ritchie on new contract as 'future Scotland captain' signs record deal

Scotland back-row Jamie Ritchie has become the latest big name to commit his future to Edinburgh Rugby after signing a club record deal.

Jamie Ritchie in action for Edinburgh during the Guinness Pro14 tie against Glasgow Warriors at BT Murrayfield, on January 02, 2021 (Photo by Ross Parker / SNS Group)
Jamie Ritchie in action for Edinburgh during the Guinness Pro14 tie against Glasgow Warriors at BT Murrayfield, on January 02, 2021 (Photo by Ross Parker / SNS Group)

The 24-year-old from Strathkinnes in Fife has been one of the club's star performers in recent years and has been rewarded with the longest contract in the club’s history, although the exact length of the agreement has not been revealed.

The former Scotland U20 captain made his debut against Leinster in 2014 and has gone on to make 73 appearances for Edinburgh while earning 23 caps for his country since his 2018 debut against Canada.

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His re-signing comes just one week after fellow back-row for club and country, Hamish Watson, also penned a long-term extension, much to the delight of head coach Richard Cockerill.

“There’s no two ways about it, this really is fantastic news for the club,” he said. “Jamie and Hamish are two of best back-row forwards in the game right now.

“The back-row and their role at the breakdown is so vital in today’s game. Dominance, and at the very least parity, is so often a decisive factor in the outcome of the game, while Jamie’s height and athleticism means he’s also an excellent lineout option."

He added: “Jamie is an excellent young player with an old head on his shoulders. He has a really bright future ahead of him and we’re delighted he’s signed such a long-term deal.

“His work-rate is immense but it’s the quality of work within that which sets him apart.

“He’s a fantastic leader on the park and certainly has, in my opinion, the capacity to captain his country in the future.”

Ritchie – who’s at home on either flank – is delighted to be remaining at the club he joined straight from school seven years ago.

He said: “I’m really chuffed to be staying at Edinburgh. It means a lot to me and my family to know we’ll be here for the foreseeable future.

“I have been at this club since I was 17 and these guys have been like my family since I left school. We have a strong group here and I think we can continue to improve.

“Edinburgh is a great club in a great city with an amazing bunch of boys who work extremely hard. I’m proud of what I have achieved so far in my time at the club and I feel there is so much more to come.

“I want to continue to help improve this club. I think we have made strides in the last few seasons and there’s still lots we can do to get better, on and off the field.

“With the leadership group we have here at the club I believe we can build something special and win silverware.

“We also have brilliant fans who I can’t wait to have back watching us, when we can. This is a big part of the reason why I feel Edinburgh is the place for me to continue my career.

“Scottish Rugby has been hugely supportive of this long-term extension from the get-go, and I’d like to thank them personally for backing me and providing a solid platform from which I’ve been able to grow and develop as a rugby player.”

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