Kyle Steyn return is like a new signing for Glasgow Warriors after a year out

Kyle Steyn hasn’t played since making his Scotland debut in the 2020 Six Nations win over France at Murrayfield so his selection for Glasgow Warriors in their Rainbow Cup opener against Benetton comes as a fillip for both club and country.

Kyle Steyn is back in the Glasgow Warriors side after recovering from a serious hamstring injury. Picture: Craig Williamson/SNS

A serious hamstring injury combined with the enforced lockdown lay-off has kept him out for well over a year but he returns on the wing for Saturday night’s match in Treviso.

Jonny Bell, the Glasgow assistant coach, says the management team will keep a careful eye on Steyn and the player is unlikely to play the whole match.

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“It’s great having Kyle back. He’s like a new signing for us,” said Bell. “He’s been phased through very gradually and hit the right spot now so it’s a good opportunity to see him playing again.

Kyle Steyn has not played since making his Scotland debut in the Guinness Six Nations win over France at BT Murrayfield in March 2020. Picture: Gary Hutchison/SNS

“He’ll obviously be capped in terms of his game time so that’s why it’s good to start him and then take him off when we feel it’s an appropriate stage.

“The problem has been with his hamstrings. He tore the hamstring off the bone and then had a recurrence of that injury. So he’s had surgery twice.

“It’s been a hard old season for him. I remember arriving at the start of July and there were high hopes for him for the Edinburgh games but that was it.

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“So it’s been frustrating for Kyle. But he’s been training well and looks fit and fresh. Everyone else is probably feeling tired towards the end of the season and he’s raring to go. It’s good to have a player of that quality and mindset coming in.”

The other surprise in the Warriors starting XV is the selection of hooker Fraser Brown at openside flanker. With the co-captain playing in the back row, George Turner will wear the No 2 jersey.

“It’s about getting good players out on the pitch,” explained Bell. “George is back in the mix and has had a good season and Fraser is obviously not long back from injury. Our back row resources are a little bit thin so it was a good opportunity to get quality players on the pitch together.”

Rory Darge, who joined the club recently from Edinburgh, is named on the bench and is in line to make his Glasgow debut. So too is Tom Lambert, the young prop, who is a Scotland under-20 international.

Glasgow Warriors (v Benetton, Rainbow Cup, Saturday, 1pm, Stadio de Monigo, Treviso, live on Premier Sports 2):

15. Cole Forbes; 14. Rufus McLean, 13. Nick Grigg, 12. Sam Johnson, 11. Kyle Steyn; 10. Ross Thompson, 9. George Horne; 1. Oli Kebble, 2. George Turner, 3. Zander Fagerson, 4. Richie Gray, 5. Rob Harley, 6. Fotu Lokotui, 7. Fraser Brown, 8. Ryan Wilson.

Substitutes: 16. Grant Stewart, 17. Tom Lambert, 18. D’arcy Rae, 19. Leone Nakarawa, 20. Rory Darge, 21. Ali Price, 22. Ian Keatley, 23. Ollie Smith.

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