Retirement Call for Foundation Giltini Adam Ashe

5 months ago

Former Scotland forward Adam Ashe will zealously dive into coaching now injury has forced him to retire after two seasons playing for the LA Giltinis.

The popular No.8 gave a parting salute to the Giltinis for the “inspiration and fresh hunger” to pursue a coaching career because of “an amazing experience with the club.”

Ashe’s decision to call time on his playing career at 28 was made for him by the three bulging disks in his neck which grounded him for much of the 2022 Major League Rugby season.

“This would be a harder decision to finish up quite early if I wasn’t so passionate about getting into coaching,” Ashe said. “A lot of players don’t know what comes next. I do and I’m pumped for it.

“I’ve already done some university-level coaching in the background with UCLA as a defence coach and with the forwards. I looked after the maul at the Giltinis for part of this season.

"The collision areas are what I’m interested in and I like seeing people do well. I’ve had some ongoing symptoms from the neck injury with some weakness in my right arm. After eight surgeries to the body in six years, it’s time for a different direction.”

Ashe will forever be Giltini #8 in the club’s history. He was the first European signing announced by the club in late 2020. He played 17 games in all. He ran the ball with authority, was a quality lineout target, marshalled the maul expertly, clicked into the team’s attacking patterns and was valued experience for the pack.

“Diving into the unknown, at times, serves you well in life and that’s what it was joining a start-up club in the USA after being with Glasgow Warriors for a long time,” Ashe said.

“I could easily say being part of winning a MLR Championship in 2021 was the highlight but there’s so much more to it. “With players and families moving to the Giltinis from different parts of the world, we’ve had to form our own little community in LA. I’ve met some really amazing people and the family environment around the club is unlike any other I’ve experienced. “The most enjoyable years of my career have been in LA in many ways. “I’ve been inspired too seeing young guys move into coaching like (Giltinis head coach) Stephen Hoiles (at 39 last year) and how they relate to players.

“Coaching has definitely been in my mind for quite a few years. I’ll head back to Scotland for the next stage but, who knows, I’d love to get back to the US at some point.” A ruptured bicep cruelly ruled Ashe out of the 2021 MLR play-offs but he had a role on MLR Championship day he’ll never forget at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum.

He was DJ for the half-time show, a role he also dabbled in with 10 or so gigs around Hermosa Beach and Manhattan Beach during the last off-season. Ashe played six Tests for Scotland in 2014-15, including the pulsating yet narrow 24-16 loss to the All Blacks at Murrayfield in 2014.

“Playing for Scotland at Murrayfield for the first time (against Argentina in 2014), singing the anthem, having my family in the crowd...that’s every rugby kid’s dream,” Ashe said.

Head coach Hoiles said the Giltinis had signed wisely when they recruited Ashe to the club as one of the foundation building blocks for the club.

“Adam has been a fantastic team man from the start. It’s unfortunate he’s been frustrated by injury in both seasons,” Hoiles said. “These are often the times you see how someone contributes. He’s been exceptional off the field and went above and beyond. “He did some maul work in the coaching area for us. He’s an intelligent, measured guy who knows rugby and the club wishes him well for a bright future.”

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