Glasgow returning home to Hughenden after row with Hillhead is resolved

GLASGOW will return to Hughenden this season after the SRU buried the hatchet with Hillhead Sports Club and agreed a new deal.

Gordon McKie, the SRU chief executive, suddenly moved Glasgow away from their West End home last November to Partick Thistle's Firhill ground after what is understood to have been a disagreement over the share of revenues associated with the professional team matches.

However, both McKie and Hillhead stated yesterday that this had been put to bed and that a new agreement will enable Glasgow to return to the popular rugby ground in time for the opening match of the season, against the Newport-Gwent Dragons on 1 September, and remain there until next summer with an option for another year. McKie managed to conclude the deal just hours before Glasgow took to the field in their training match with Moseley, which the Scots won 55-5.

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He said: "I'm delighted that we have been able to overcome the previous long-running difficulties. Confirming a home ground for our Glasgow team has been a complicated process, which has taken longer than we would have liked. However, I'm very pleased that we have managed to confirm this partnership with Hillhead Sports Club. We are determined to listen to our supporters and the clear message was that Hughenden is their preferred venue. Our priority is to ensure professional rugby takes a grip in Glasgow and Hughenden will help make it happen."

Ron Meikle, the chairman of Hillhead SC, admitted that the club had been keen to have Glasgow back sharing their home, which adds to the attraction of the sports club.

He said: "We are looking forward to welcoming Glasgow Warriors back to Hughenden. Following our previous period of hosting the team, there were several outstanding issues surrounding their tenancy. However, after recent discussions, we feel that we are now able to host the Warriors once again."

Sean Lineen, Glasgow's head coach, insisted that the uncertainty had not affected his build-up to the season, but admitted it was helpful to now know where the team will play. "The players and coaches have been concentrating on our pre-season training which is going well," he said. "We've had every faith that the matter of where we play this season would be settled in time for the first game.

"We know that Hughenden is a popular ground for our supporters and the players really enjoy the atmosphere there during games. Hughenden has had a reputation in the past of being akin to a fortress for us so, with the supporters' help, we hope that reputation will return and boost us all for the new season." Season ticket prices will now be worked out and, the SRU insisted, will go on sale next week.

Supporters in the Borders do know where they are playing next season, with a popular Netherdale home, but they are also still awaiting season tickets. It remains to be seen how many may have been switched off by the protracted issue of firming up a home venue and whether the delay will affect pre-season sales.