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Champions Cup winner Sam Skinner to join Edinburgh

The two-time English Premiership champion will leave Exeter to join several of his international team-mates.

Champions Cup winner Sam Skinner to join Edinburgh SNS Group

Champions Cup winner Sam Skinner will join Edinburgh for next season.

The two-time English Premiership champion will leave Exeter to join several of his international team-mates in the capital.

The 15-times capped Scotland lock said: “I’m massively excited to make the move north next season. The URC is an extremely competitive league and I’m really looking forward to testing myself in a new environment with a great group of lads.

“I want to challenge myself and grow as a player and Edinburgh is the perfect place to do that. I can’t wait to get stuck in, help the club to success while really experiencing Edinburgh and Scotland.

“I’m really looking forward to working with Mike (Blair). I obviously worked with him for a period of time at Scotland and I like how he communicates and connects with players, while motivating them at the same time.

“He has Edinburgh playing an exciting brand of rugby and I believe it will suit my own playing style too.

“Having spoken to a lot of the boys at Scotland, there seems to be a really strong culture at the club, while it’s an exciting time with the new stadium, which I’ve heard has been fantastic so far with a brilliant atmosphere.”

Head coach Blair expressed his delight at the capture.

“He is a proven winner, while at 26 years old he still has plenty of years ahead of him to develop and grow as a player,” he said.

“I’ve obviously worked with Sam during my time with the national team, so I’ve seen first hand how dedicated he is to his craft, while his leadership and experience will bring added strength and depth to what is an already exciting forward pack.”

Skinner added that it was an “extremely hard” decision to leave Exeter.

“I’ve grown up supporting Exeter and lived here all my life,” he told his current club’s website. “What the Chiefs have given me in terms of my career is something I could never have dreamed of.

“To have experienced what I have, I will forever be grateful. As I said, it’s not been an easy decision, but I’ve come to a point in my career where, on a personal and playing level, I need to challenge myself in a different area and this feels like the right time to move on.”