Once a Warrior 2017: Part 4 – RWC Season Recruits (forwards)

Sila Puafisi

Appearances – 44
Tries – 2

Debut – Ospreys at Scotstoun, 1/11/15
Last game – Edinburgh at Scotstoun, 6/5/17

Sila Puafisi was Glasgow’s Mr. Indestructible at tighthead during his time with the club. Gregor Townsend had struggled to find a go to option for one of the most attritional positions on the pitch but once Sila arrived after the World Cup he was a near ever present for the Warriors, including rattling off a run of 19 consecutive appearances – quite some achievement in the era of Toony Tombola!

He might not have been the most heralded of Glasgow’s signings for 2015/16, being announced very late in the summer – just 10 days before the club’s opening Pro 12 fixtures in fact. The big man was a sizable contributor though to the improvement of the scrum under forwards’ coach, Dan McFarland. The Warriors’ success rate on their own ball was 83% in 2014/15. That increased to 85% during the RWC, before Sila made his debut, then rose to 90% over the next 8 games before hitting 97% for the second half of the season, with the triumphant Tongan to the fore.

Moved to – Brive

Simone Favaro

Appearances – 30
Tries – 3

Debut – Dragons at Scotstoun, 16/10/15
Last game – Dragons at Scotstoun, 4/3/17

Simone Favaro really took to Scotland during his 2 year stint with the Warriors. It would be fair to say that Scotland’s rugby fans (well certainly the Weegie ones!) really took to the itinerant Italian too. Simone hit the ground running – at full throttle in fact – from the moment he stepped on the Scotstoun pitch. Making his debut off the bench against the Dragons, immediately after RWC duty with Italy, he was yellow carded within 12 minutes of coming on but then just 6 minutes after returning to the fray he scored the 4th try to clinch a bonus point for Glasgow.

He sacrificed any chance of playing in the 2016 Six Nations in order to get his battered body fit to play and repay the faith shown in him by the club. Throughout that campaign he was the embodiment of the Warrior spirit, putting his body on the line time and again for his teammates, the club and the fans. It was no surprise when he was voted player of the season for 2015/16.

Like so many of the Warriors the campaign just past has seen Simone’s high points come in European competition – Dan Carter would have been jumping at shadows for days after Glasgow’s encounter in Paris with Racing 92 where Favaro revelled in hammering into the legendary stand off seemingly any time he got his hands on the ball. It was a shame that injury prevented a proper send-off from the Scotstoun pitch that Simone graced for the past 2 years.

Moved to – Fiamme Oro Rugby

Djustice-Sears Duru

Appearances – 4
Tries – 1

Debut – Dragons at Rodney Parade, 30/9/16
Last game – Scarlets at Parc y Scarlets, 5/11/16

After joining the club in March 2016, Djustice had to wait patiently to make his debut. The Dave Parade mudbath might not have seemed like the most auspicious place to kick things off but it would have been a memorable night for the Canadian prop. That started a run of 4 appearances in 6 games, including his first start against the Scarlets in November. He had to take a step back for Glasgow’s 2 Scotland caps and then had international duty of his own during the Six Nations – just at the time he might have picked up some more minutes to stake a claim on one of those Warriors’ jerseys.

His opportunities for memorable moments were limited but there was one excellent breenge down the touchline against Treviso which showed what he was capable of. From OTOTM’s perspective though he was involved in one of the highlights of the season, an event that had been months in the anticipation – the one and only ‘Metallica substitution’…

Moved to – it looks like Djustice played for Ealing Trailfinders (a popular destination for former Warriors) in a preseason friendly but their website hasn’t updated yet to confirm for certain that he has joined their squad for 2017/18.

Jarrod Firth

Moved to – Grenoble in January 2017 (released at the end of the season and currently a free agent back home in New Zealand)

Jarrod followed in the footsteps of the lesser-spotted Hamish Mitchell as a Kiwi prop who never quite managed to make his competitive debut for Glasgow. The closest he came was a friendly when Canada (featuring fellow prop Djustice-Sears Duru) were demolished at Bridgehaugh. He was also a regular for Currie in the BT Premiership alongside fellow Warrior, Ratu Tagive.

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