Edinburgh sign Callum McLelland from Castleford Tigers

Stephen Gemmell has hailed the capture of a teenage talent
Stephen Gemmell has hailed the capture of a teenage talent

Edinburgh have confirmed the signing of Castleford Tigers teenager Callum McLelland as a part of Scotland's new initiative to unearth fresh talent.

The Scottish Qualified programme that has replaced the Exiles initiative scouts talents eligible to play for Scotland beyond its borders and the18-year-old becomes the first player to be revamped under the programme.

McLelland has captained England rugby league under 16 side and has been part of the Super League club's academy since August last year.

SRU technical director Stephen Gemmell said: "We have had a very positive response to the launch of the new SQ programme and are delighted to be able to attract a young talented rugby league player to Scottish Rugby.

"We have been monitoring Callum through our programme, utilising Alan Tait's expertise in rugby league, for some time and it's great he has taken the opportunity to sign for Edinburgh Rugby and continue his career development in union, in Scotland."

Edinburgh head coach Richard Cockerill added: "Callum is a young and gifted stand-off so it will be exciting to see him continue his development with us as he makes the switch from league into union.

"I'm delighted that he sees his future with Edinburgh - a club, that for him, has the right culture and environment where he can work hard and realise his potential."