Waratahs sign former Crusaders prospect
TRANSFER NEWS: Waratahs have secured the signature of highly-rated Shute Shield loose forward, Charlie Gamble for the 2020 Super Rugby season.
The former Crusaders Academy product has penned a one-year deal with NSW Rugby, after dominating the Shute Shield in 2019.
Gamble has performed strongly for Sydney in the National Rugby Championship (NRC), providing stability for Chris Whitaker in the back row after making a successful return from injury.
Hailing from Christchurch, Gamble has taken an unusual journey into the NSW Waratahs system – arriving in Australia in 2018 to play a season for Petersham in the NSW Suburban Rugby Competition.
Gamble was brought to Sydney by the club, as he looked for a change after a number of years in the Crusaders pathway and a pre-season with their Super Rugby side.
“My partner and I were just looking for something new,” Gamble said.
“Petersham were fantastic, I loved playing footy there – the club did so much for me.
“It really freshened me up [playing there], allowed me to enjoy my footy and all the good things that come with that.”
Gamble was awarded the Kentwell Medal as player of the competition, guiding Petersham to a premiership.
He was snapped up by Eastern Suburbs and quickly took to the Shute Shield.
NSW Waratahs Head Coach, Rob Penney said that Gamble would prove a valuable addition to the 2020 Super Rugby squad.
“I’ve been doing my homework [since being appointed] and from what I’ve seen Charlie’s been excellent for Easts and more recently shown what he can do in the NRC for Sydney,” said Penney.
“Speaking with Tim [Rapp] and others around NSW Rugby, Charlie comes highly regarded and I’m looking forward to working with him.
“With a full pre-season under his belt and some time back in a professional system, he’ll have every opportunity to make an impact at this [Super Rugby] level.
“It’s a great story, he’s a guy that’s come to Australia, found that enjoyment in his rugby and is now making the most of his opportunities – we’re really pleased to have Charlie on board.”
Gamble said he was excited about the chance to challenge himself at the top level.
“After speaking with Tim and getting everything sorted, I’m just excited to get going,” Gamble said.
“I’ve got a taste of things in the NRC, and working with Whits [Chris Whitaker] and the team has been great.
“I’m just thankful to Rob, Tim and the team for this opportunity, the [NSW] Waratahs are a great organisation that I’m proud to now be a part of.”
Gamble will begin training with the wider squad for the 2020 Super Rugby pre-season, and will continue to represent Eastern Suburbs in the Shute Shield.
— NSW Waratahs (@NSWWaratahs) October 8, 2019