Under the Spotlight: Lewis Carmichael and Luke Crosbie
There have been numerous re-signings announced by Edinburgh Rugby recently, and notably, a lot of young talent are choosing to remain in the capital. This time we’ll be taking a look at another couple of up-and-coming forwards – Lewis Carmichael and Luke Crosbie.
Lewis Carmichael presides over the lock position with a rugby mind beyond his years – the Edinburgh second row is just 22-years-old. This mere fact has not held him back by any means, however.
Carmichael signed for Edinburgh in the run-up to the 2016/17 season, committing to the club for two years. In February 2017, he was sent out on loan to (then Super Rugby side) Western Force, before returning for the commencement of this season.
It was his impressive performances whilst out on loan ‘down under’, that caught the eye of Scotland coach Gregor Townsend – he named Carmichael in his team for the 2017 summer tour. The emerging ‘boiler room’ talent also has the honour of having previously represented his country at both under-18 and under-20 level.
With 25 Edinburgh caps so far, the lock can be recognised for his quick reflexes in lineouts, as well as his lack of fear of running the ball. We have been graced with the image of Carmichael battering through many a tackle this season. Even more pleasing is the fact that he is just as diligent in his defensive efforts.
He has certainly won over the club’s fans so far, and so, many were pleased to hear the news in December 2017 that Carmichael had chosen to re-sign with the club for a further two years. So, if you have missed any of his barnstorming performances this season, fear not, there will be many more to come.
Luke Crosbie is an emerging face fighting for one of Edinburgh’s flanker shirts. The 20-year-old from Livingstone has presented his case well, with a number of breakout performances this season.
Coming from a background of playing for Livingstone RFC followed by Currie RFC, Crosbie was a member of the Scotland under-20 team who made history last year. The team charted the highest ever finish of a Scotland team in the under-20 world championships – finishing fifth – out in Georgia.
In the aftermath of this statement performance by the under-20s, in December 2017, Edinburgh announced that they had signed Crosbie to the club. His first professional contract would see him commit to the capital for two years.
Since then, he has gained 10 caps for the club and made one thing abundantly clear to fans and opponents alike – he is a forward who is determined to run ball wherever and whenever possible.
This hunger to break through the opposition’s defensive line has manifested in Crosbie scoring two tries in his ten appearances (against London Irish and Leinster).
With players such as Hamish Watson and John Hardie for teammates, Crosbie will benefit from their wealth of experience. And this will only grow with the arrival of Scotland international captain John Barclay, to the capital next season.
Whilst it will be beneficial to Crosbie to learn from these individuals, he must also continue to develop his own game in order to ensure that he does not become overshadowed by his more-experienced counterparts.
Ultimately, it has become apparent that Richard Cockerill prides himself upon giving younger players opportunities, as long as they are prepared to work tirelessly to prove themselves. This certainly seems to be the aim of all four of these players, so definitely keep an eye on them this season, and next.