Edinburgh sign Australian duo Jono Lance and Matt Gordon
Edinburgh have signed Australian backs Jono Lance and Matt Gordon as they continue to reshape their squad for next season.
The capital club announced on Thursday that nine players would be leaving at the end of the 2019-20 campaign, including experienced performers John Barclay, Matt Scott, Dougie Fife and Simon Hickey.
The arrival of experienced stand-off Lance from Worcester Warriors will help offset the loss of Hickey.
The 29-year-old is a double Super Rugby winner, having helped both Queensland Reds and New South Wales Waratahs triumph in the elite Southern Hemisphere competition.
Lance, who will join Edinburgh for next season, can also play at full-back and centre.
“To get the chance to come to a club that has become one of the strongest in the Guinness Pro14 and to hopefully play Champions Cup rugby was an opportunity I couldn’t refuse,” he said.
“The style of rugby Edinburgh have been playing is something that excites me and to have coaches who feel that you can be a big part of developing that brand of rugby was something I wanted to be a massive part of.”
Lance moved to the UK to join Worcester in 2017 and made 30 appearances, scoring 82 points.
The Canberra-born back made his Super Rugby debut for the Reds in 2011, a season in which the Queensland club claimed their first Super Rugby title. Lance played at full-back in the final as the Reds won 18-13 against a Crusaders team featuring Sean Maitland, Dan Carter, Sonny Bill Williams and Richie McCaw.
Playing alongside Australian internationals Quade Cooper, Will Genia and Digby Ioane, the stand-off made 21 appearances in three seasons at Suncorp Stadium before joining the Waratahs in 2014.
Lance tasted success once again with his new club although he did not play in the final as the Waratahs beat the Crusaders 33-32. Prior to joining Worcester Warriors he played for Western Force.
Edinburgh coach Richard Cockerill said: “Jono is a very experienced playmaker that fits the mould of both the type of rugby player and person that we want at this club.”
Fellow Aussie Gordon will join Edinburgh next season from London Scottish. The centre has scored four tries in 15 games for the Exiles this season. Born in Toowoomba, Queensland, Gordon, 25, played previously for Queensland Country, Brisbane City and Easts Tigers.
Cockerill said: “He’s clearly a powerful man that runs very hard and direct – he’ll definitely add some grunt and strength to our midfield.”
Gordon said: “I’m looking forward to getting started and bring something different to the squad.”
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