Scotland scrum-half Ali Price has joined Edinburgh on a season-long loan from Glasgow in a move described as being “in the national interest”.
The 30-year-old has had a frustrating time over the past year, slipping down the pecking order at Warriors amid heightened competition from George Horne and Jamie Dobie.
As a result, Price – who has been at Scotstoun since 2014 – lost his long-time status as Scotland’s first-choice number nine to Ben White for this year’s Six Nations and then the first two games of the recent World Cup.
After forcing his way back in to start the national team’s two closing pool matches at the showpiece against Romania and Ireland – and scoring tries in both – a transfer has been agreed, with the involvement of Scotland management, aimed at getting the 2021 British and Irish Lion squad member playing more rugby at club level.
“Glasgow Warriors have released Ali Price on loan to Edinburgh Rugby with immediate effect, for the remainder of the season after an approach was made by the Scotland National Team and Edinburgh Rugby,” Glasgow said on Thursday.
“Price felt this was an opportunity that would be beneficial for his own personal development.
“The club has agreed, considering this factor, the move being in the national interest, and the timing of the proposal meaning Price can move straight into Edinburgh following his post-Rugby World Cup break and the subsequent return to play protocols he has been managing for a groin injury.”
Price – who has 66 Scotland caps to his name – will join the Edinburgh squad on Monday and is in line to make his debut in the URC match at home to Vodacom Bulls next Friday.
“I’m looking forward to finding my feet amongst a new group of players and seeing how I can work alongside the Scotland boys I’ve been in camp with before,” Price told Edinburgh’s official website.
“This is a new challenge that I look forward to seeing where it can lead.”
With Edinburgh scrum-half Scott Steele currently injured, Price will compete with club captain Ben Vellacott for game time as he stakes a claim to keep the Scotland number jersey going into the Six Nations, which kicks off in early February.
“Ali is a Test Lion and brings to the club a wealth of experience at the very top level of international rugby,” said Edinburgh senior coach Sean Everitt.
“We’re blessed to have a really strong group of nines at the club, who all have unique strengths and abilities.
“Scott unfortunately continues to work his way back from a hip injury that has kept him sidelined since October, which was also a factor in this move.
“Ali is a player with great vision and understanding of the game, and those qualities will only rub off on our scrum-halves. His arrival also breeds competition for places.
“We’re looking forward to welcoming him to the club where he’ll get the opportunity to compete for a place from the get-go.”