Patient Luke Crosbie revels in first Scotland cap - and has special words for his gran

Luke Crosbie has had to be patient when it comes to winning his first Scotland cap.

Luke Crosbie in action for Scotland. (Photo by Ross MacDonald / SNS Group)
Luke Crosbie in action for Scotland. (Photo by Ross MacDonald / SNS Group)

The 24-year-old flanker has been involved in previous camps, but had to watch on during the 2019 and 2020 Six Nations campaigns as others were picked ahead of him. He was also named in the squad for this summer’s internationals that were cancelled due to the pandemic.

A Scotland Under-20 internationalist who has come through the ranks at Edinburgh Rugby, he has bided his time, which is why it is understandable to hear about the emotions he felt on Saturday when he came on as a half-time replacement for Hamish Watson in Scotland’s 60-14 success over Tonga.

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"It's a massive honour," beamed Crosbie. "I wasn't really sure when I would get on. I was just staying in the moment and knowing my detail and as soon as Gregor [Townsend, Scotland coach] said I was coming on at half-time, I was confident that I had done my work during the week and I'd step up and enjoy it.

“It's been what I've wanted to do ever since I was a wee kid growing up. It's sinking in a bit, like how much it means for me and especially my family. They know how hard I've worked and the journey I've been on, so it was a great moment that I'll remember.”

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Crosbie was one of eight Scotland players to make their first senior appearance for their country against the Pacific Islanders, but all of their relatives will be hard pushed to run Crosbie’s granny close in the pride stakes. Maureen, who is in her 70s, attended her first match to watch her grandson play and the Livingston-born forward made special mention of her.

"The full squad was there!" continued Crosbie. “Even my wee granny, she's not been to a rugby match before. It was great to see her. Loves rugby, she follows me all the time. She's always cutting out the paper – even if there's a wee mention of my name. She's got a scrapbook. She's a big supporter of me. Just an honest, lovely wee granny and she made the effort to come out and it meant a lot for her.

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"And then my dad, uncle, auntie, my grandad, and then all the boys from Livingston came down as well. I'm sure they enjoyed a few beers and watched the game, so it was good to catch up with them as well.

"I was speaking to my family and when they saw that I was coming on at half-time, they were tearing it up. That's kind of why I do it. I want to create these moments for not just me, but the people that are close to me. That's the most important thing you can do. It's not just always about you, it's the people around you who support you from the start.”

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Crosbie will hope to get more game-time in the Autumn Nations Series clashes that remain, starting this Sunday against Australia. "Scottish rugby is in a great place,” he added. “The way that Edinburgh and Glasgow are playing, the way we can come together and put performances like that out in the field, training is going really well ... It's just an exciting time to be a part of it.”

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