All Black Macdonald Set To Land At Scotstoun

Glasgow Warriors today announced the signing of Angus Macdonald, a back-row forward who boasts vast experience at the top levels of the game and has pledged to dedicate the prime years of his career to the Scotstoun cause.

The Aucklander, primarily a blindside flanker but comfortable in any of the loose forward roles, excelled for his native province in what is now known as the ITM Cup before earning a reputation as one of the most consistently impressive performers in Super Rugby with the Blues.

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Glasgow Warriors today announced the signing of Angus Macdonald, a back-row forward who boasts vast experience at the top levels of the game and has pledged to dedicate the prime years of his career to the Scotstoun cause.

The Aucklander, primarily a blindside flanker but comfortable in any of the loose forward roles, excelled for his native province in what is now known as the ITM Cup before earning a reputation as one of the most consistently impressive performers in Super Rugby with the Blues.

Highly rated from a young age, Macdonald won two All Black caps on the Graham Henry-led tour of the northern hemisphere in 2005, one of these appearances coming against Scotland at Murrayfield that November. The call-up came after he starred for New Zealand Maori in their win over the visiting British and Irish Lions.

The previous year he had been promoted to captain of the Blues, having helped them win the Super 14 title in 2003.

Since 2008, he has been based in Japan, where he has played a key role in the development of Toyota Verblitz and latterly Coca Cola West Red Sparks.

Macdonald, who turned 31 in January, will arrive in Scotland this summer, primed to deliver his all-action brand of breakaway play on the fields of the RaboDirect PRO12 and Heineken Cup.

He has signed a two-year contract, committing him to the Warriors until at least the end of May 2014, subject to the appropriate visa being obtained.

Macdonald is the fourth major Glasgow addition for the coming campaign to be announced so far. Tonga World Cup star Viliami Ma"afu (No.8) and reigning Newcastle Falcons Player of the Season Tim Swinson (lock) have been recruited for the pack, while Sean Lamont is set to return to the club where he first made his name in the game.

The Warriors have also re-signed 15 leading players in recent months.

Confirming his delight at joining the Scotstoun set-up, Macdonald told www.glasgowwarriors.org: "I"m really happy to have signed for Glasgow Warriors and I"m excited by the opportunity of playing for a club where there's a concerted effort to achieve success.

'since this move became a possibility, I"ve been keeping a close eye on how the team have been performing in the RaboDirect PRO12, and it's clear they"ve got a tremendous spirit and sense of purpose in what they do.

'they"ve got every chance of making the play-offs and they"ve recruited and retained a good number of players, so it's a positive environment to be coming into.

'the aim will be to use everything I"ve learned in the southern hemisphere to bring my own influence to the table. My overriding feeling right now is one of real anticipation. It's a great new challenge for me, and one I can't wait to get stuck into."

Head coach Sean Lineen said Macdonald "absolutely fits the bill for a Glasgow player," explaining: "Angus is a big, tough rawbone Kiwi who I"m convinced the supporters and other players will love.

"He meets all the criteria: he's hard working, uncompromising, honest and can play a bit as well.

"We"ve been talking to him for a while, and it's clear he's the right sort of player for this club, and the right sort of person too. He's desperate to come here, which is exactly the attitude you want to see from a prospective signing."

Macdonald hails from a family of All Blacks. His father, Hamish, won 12 caps at lock in the 1970s, while his uncle, Doug Bruce, appeared 14 times at stand-off in the subsequent decade. Macdonald junior also represented New Zealand at age-grade level in cricket.

Managing director Nathan Bombrys commented: 'this is fantastic news for Glasgow Warriors._ Angus is a quality player, an All Black, and we"re confident he will make a significant contribution to the club over the coming years.
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"He gives us ball carrying and experience and he's making the move for the right reasons - his signing is an important one in the make-up of the squad that we are building for next season, and we"re delighted to be announcing it as we begin the final phase of our efforts to reach the RaboDirect PRO12 play-offs."

The Warriors" quest to reach the semi-finals continues on Friday when Italian side Aironi come to Firhill.

Students can celebrate the end of term with our super value _5 tickets - half the normal price.

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