12 Aug 2015
Henry Pyrgos to captain Scotland
Loughborough University is delighted to see that former student Henry Pyrgos will captain Scotland Rugby Team this weekend for the first time in his young career. A Chemistry with Sports Science student, Henry made a great contribution to the university’s famous rugby programme.
The 26-year-old Glasgow Warriors scrum-half found out on Monday that he was to be given the task of skippering the team in their first World Cup warm-up Test against Six Nations champions Ireland in Dublin on Saturday evening.
“Vern [Cotter] pulled me aside on Monday and said he would like me to captain,” explained Pyrgos. “It was an amazing feeling, the greatest day of my life and the family are thrilled. It is a huge honour to captain Scotland and I jumped at the opportunity.
“The first call I made was to my mum and she was thrilled for me. It’s just a shame my grandparents aren’t around to see me do it. My mum is a very passionate Scot, I was very close to my grandparents and I always supported Scotland growing up.
“Nothing will change massively for me. I’ll focus a little more on the team rather than just myself. It’s exciting.”
Pyrgos’s path to the Scotland set-up started in his mid-teens when he took part in some Exiles training camps and he eventually turned out for the under-19s. Whilst at Loughborough University he played for Scotland Under-20s at the 2009 junior World Cup in Japan before winning a move to Glasgow Warriors.
He now has 13 caps to his name but the 14th is set to be extra special as a superb Guinness Pro12-title winning season is rewarded with the captaincy. Pyrgos’s form was particularly strong in the closing stages of the campaign, capped by a brilliant try in the Belfast final as Munster were ripped to shreds in a thrilling opening 40 minutes that set Glasgow on their way to a first major title for a Scottish club.
As a student at Loughborough University Henry played a pivotal role in the team that won BUCS gold at Twickenham in the 2009/10 season, as well as helping Loughborough students finish 2nd in National 2 North and reach the playoff final.
Henry fully enthralled himself in the rugby programme while studying at Loughborough, and had the typical attitude of first on the pitch last off it. His commitment and attitude towards the rugby club did nothing but encourage his development as a player and everyone around him. Working closely with Dave Morris and specifically Tosh Askew before he left, Henry thrived off the ever professional environment that theses coaches and Loughborough University continue to provide.
Dave Bassett, Loughborough Rugby Programme Manager, commented:
“All involved in Loughborough Rugby have followed Henry's progress over the years and it is testament to his hard work and dedication that he has continued to perform at the highest level. To now go on and captain his country is a fantastic accomplishment and we continue to wish Henry all the best.”
It is already a big week for rugby at Loughborough as the World Cup Trophy is coming to campus on Thursday 13th August between 3pm and 5pm. As part of the Rugby World Cup Trophy Tour, staff, students and the local community will get the chance to have their picture taken with the trophy, which will be presented on the Hazlerigg lawn by the University Fountain.