Scottish sensation Alex Grove admits he has enjoyed an ‘unbelievable’ 12 months after being called up into the senior international set-up for the autumn Test series.
Academy product Grove, who qualifies for Scotland through his Glasgow-born grandfather, Ron Wylie, the former Aston Villa and Birmingham City footballer who became West Bromwich Albion manager, made his Guinness Premiership debut just over a year ago against Harlequins.
The 21-year-old has now capped a stunning rise through the rugby ranks by being named as one of three uncapped players called up by Scotland boss Andy Robinson the first autumn Test match with Fiji.
“I’m massively pleased, over the moon,” said Grove, who was part of the IRB Nations Cup winning Scotland A team that Robinson took to Romania during the summer.
“I’m still pinching myself from getting the call-up on Wednesday and can’t wait to join up with Scotland.
“Andy Robinson said during the summer tour to Romania that the senior squad could include new faces if players were performing consistently in the weeks leading up to the team being announced.
“I had felt that I had given myself a chance with my form early season which has been pretty solid and consistent and so to get the call is fantastic.
“It’s been an unbelievable 12 months for me. However, crucially, this is where it starts now and there is still much to do. Getting a call-up is great, but what I need to do now is go on the training camps and show I am worth a place in the team.
“The competition for places will be fierce, I have looked at the squad and there are some experienced players. All I can do now is give it everything to be involved. If I do that I will be happy.
“The games are at Murrayfield and it would be great to play there for a first time for the senior side. It will be a special and proud day for me and my family running out for my country at Murrayfield and I just hope I can get that chance against Fiji.”
Grove will now join up with Scotland for a three-day camp at St Andrews on Monday, November 2. And the centre has paid tribute to the coaching staff at Sixways ahead of his trip north.
“I have a lot of people at Warriors to credit for this chance and fantastic opportunity,” he said.
“A lot of credit has to go to Andrew Stanley and Gary Meechan in the Academy who played such a huge role in my development and setting me off down this path.
“Mike Ruddock and all the coaching staff have also been great with me. If it wasn’t for them and the faith they put in me this wouldn’t be happening.
“It’s been a dream like year. I have made my full Guinness Premiership debut for Warriors and I’m now part of the Scotland set-up. But the big thing to remember is this is where it all starts, there is much more to achieve and much more I want to do.”
See Alex Grove in action for Warriors this weekend! For tickets to watch Warriors play Harlequins call 01905 454183 or visit the online Tickets section at www.warriors.co.uk