The 33 year old former Glasgow and Begles Bordeaux prop will join Munster at the conclusion of Scotland's World Cup campaign on a contract that will see him finish out the current season. Munster had originally agreed terms with former Auckland prop Mike Storey but the New Zealander suffered an injury that will rule him out for most of the season, playing with Northland in a pre-NPC warm-up game thus leaving the Munster management with a vacancy in the front row.
McILwham who played in France last season (Begles Bordeaux), made his international debut against Fiji in May 1998 and won his 15th cap against Ireland in Murrayfield earlier this month.
Speaking about the signing Munster coach Alan Gaffney said, " Once it became clear that Mike Storey would be unable to take up the contract with us, we felt it was important that we should try and get a prop of equal status. We feel we've done that with the signing of Gordon whose experience will not only be valuable in a team sense but also to the younger props we have in our squad."
Prop. Born: 13.11.69 in Paisley. 5ft 10in, 16st 11lbs.
Gordon Robert McIlwham made his first start in a cap international at Murrayfield when he played against Ireland in the RWC Countdown Test. Earlier in the summer he made his first international appearance for two years when he played as a substitute in the second Test on Scotland s 2003 tour of South Africa. He first appeared in a home Test match during the April 2000 victory against England. He also came on as a substitute in four of the 2001 Lloyds TSB Six Nations Championship matches.
He was a late arrival on the 2000 tour to New Zealand his wife had just given birth but he did play in three games, including as a substitute in the second Test at Eden Park. McIlwham played 21 times for Glasgow s district team before he was enlisted in Glasgow Caledonians original squad in 1998-99. The previous season he was a mainstay of the Scotland A team in the grand slam clinching victory against Engla nd as well as helping Glasgow Hawks to both promotion to Premiership Division 1 and the Tennent s Velvet Cup.
He represented Scotland Development XV and Scotland A in their victories over Tonga and Argentina in November 2001 and returned to Scotland A duty against France A and Wales A in 2002 and Italy A in 2003. A mobile, ball-playing prop who joined Glasgow Hawks from Clarkston, he won his first two caps on Scotland s 1998 Southern Hemisphere tour, making his debut against Fiji and playing as a replacement in the second Test against Australia.
He made his Scotland A debut against South Africa s Northern Bulls in January 1998. He played for Glasgow Schools while he was at Eastwood High School and his latest move was last season to France to play for Bordeaux-B gles.
International record: 15 caps. 1998 Fj A2(rep) 2000 E (rep) NZ2(rep) USA (rep) A (rep) Sam (rep). 2001 F (rep) W (rep) E (rep) It (rep). 2003 SA2 (rep) It (rep) W (rep) I.
In other news...some of the new Munster Squad members have been signed to their new clubs:
Shaun Payne - Dolphin David Pusey - Cork Con Andy Long - Old Crescent Jason Jones hughes - Shannon