O Captain! My Captain! Glasgow Warriors’ Skippers

Everything you never wanted to know about the players who have captained Glasgow – and were afraid to ask…

Joining the club captain club

New skipper, Kyle Steyn, is the 11th man named as club captain. He’s the first ever outside back with the previous incumbents being either forwards:

  • Gordon Bulloch 1996-1999
  • Cammy Mather 2003-2004
  • Jon Petrie 2004-2006
  • Al Kellock 2006-2015
  • Jonny Gray 2015-2017 *
  • Ryan Wilson 2017-2022 **
  • Callum Gibbins 2018-2020 ***
  • Fraser Brown 2020-2022 ****

Or scrum halves:

  • Andy Nicol 1999-2003
  • Henry Pyrgos 2016-2017 *****

Good things come to those who…wait

As things stand, Kyle’s first outing as skipper in a competitive match will come on the occasion of his 50th appearance for the Warriors. That’s not even close to the longest wait to lead the team, with 13 players featuring in more games before their first (imaginary) captain’s armband. These are the top 5 whose patience paid off:

  • John Barclay – 1st time captaining in his 94th appearance
  • Peter Murchie – 94th
  • Peter Horne – 95th
  • Graeme Beveridge – 111th
  • Donnie Macfadyen – 118th

(By way of contrast, Gordon Bulloch, Rowen Shepherd, Andy Nicol, Cammy Mather and Al Kellock all skippered the side when they made their Glasgow debuts.)

It’s all about positioning

When the season proper kicks off, depending on what position he is selected in, Kyle could become:

  • The first outside centre to captain Glasgow for more than 7 years (since Peter Murchie against Connacht in 2015/16).
  • The first winger to captain Glasgow for more than 10 years (since Federico Martin Aramburu v Connacht in 2011/12).
  • The first player wearing number 11 to captain Glasgow for nearly 18 years (since Kenny Logan v Leinster in 2004/05).

The all-time greats

Steyno, will be the 40th player to captain the Warriors in a competitive match. The top 10 by appearances as skipper are:

  1. Al Kellock – 152
  2. Ryan Wilson – 76
  3. Gordon Bulloch – 58
  4. Andy Nicol – 56
  5. Jon Petrie – 40
  6. Jonny Gray – 38
  7. Callum Gibbins – 36
  8. Rob Harley – 22
  9. Josh Strauss – 20
  10. Henry Pyrgos – 19

Justice for props

While the back row and scrum halves have dominated the leadership in recent seasons, it’s been a long wait for most of the outside backs. The real scandal here is that in the 26 year history of Glasgow in the professional era no prop (neither loosehead nor tighthead) has been named to captain the club in a single one of their competitive fixtures!

* Co-captain with Henry Pyrgos in season 2016/17
** Co-captain with Callum Gibbins in 2018/19 & 2019/20 and Fraser Brown in 2020/21 and 2021/22
*** Co-captain with Ryan Wilson in 2018/19 & 2019/20
**** Co-captain with Ryan Wilson in 2020/21 and 2021/22
***** Co-captain with Jonny Gray in 2016/17

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