Dominic McGeekie is one of the most active players in the London Scottish playing squad when it comes to involving himself in every asset of the club and truly embracing the new ‘One Club’ philosophy.
The former Head Boy and 1st XV Captain at John Fisher School joined the Scots at the beginning of last season after graduating from Cardiff Metropolitan University. He was an instrumental player in the Cardiff Met side for three years and said of his time in Wales, “I had a big involvement in all areas of the club, which proved to be a great learning experience whilst also getting my degree.”
Once McGeekie had finished his studies he was considering leaving the UK and heading further afield for some life experience and to maybe seek work abroad, however an agent got in touch with him and shortly afterwards he had signed for the Scots ahead of the 2016/17 season.
Despite, in McGeekie’s own words, “having a better debut season as a professional than expected” where he featured seventeen times in all competitions, this season Dom has found it tricky to force his way into the Scottish starting side under new Director of Rugby Dave Morris.
“After playing quite a bit last season, it is frustrating to not get where I wanted to so far this season. It was tough for me as I was not in the mix at the start of the season but as I felt I was slowly getting myself more and more involved I tore my ATFL in my right ankle. That put me out for about 4-6 weeks and once I returned against Yorkshire Carnegie in the B&I Cup I managed to pick up another injury a week later when we went on a training trip to Saracens.”
It was after this second minor ankle injury that McGeekie and the Scottish Medical team discovered he had some deeper, more complex issues with his ankle. After seeing a specialist, he was told that he did not require surgery but consistent rehabilitation and heavy strapping were required to make sure he does not further damage his ankle.
“Heading into the second half of the season I would like to get my way into the team and put the frustration of the first half of the season behind me. We were not firing on all cylinders and results were not going our way, so I am now looking to play a role as I feel I am can be much better utilised and have a positive effect on the team.”
A rangy and dynamic forward, 105 kilogram McGeekie says his adaptability as a forward may be hindering him nailing down a starting spot. He jokes as he compares himself to some of the other larger players in the league.
“I played a lot last season as a second row but I feel I am more of a back row player. I am never going to be the massive 120kg second row that many Championship sides have, my body was never meant to be the size but what I don’t bring in size I can bring in athleticism and work rate.”
Although many players would have been visibly frustrated and negative about a lack of game time, McGeekie has kept a smile on his face and remains very positive about his involvement with London Scottish.
“I understand everyone has a role in the Club and everyone needs to buy into that, so if they (the Coaches) see me as more of a second row then I will throw myself head first into that role.”
At the beginning of this year’s campaign, McGeekie was one of the more experience players in the squad as a new group of players came together under new Director of Rugby Dave Morris. This season Dom told us that his love for Scottish as a club has blossomed.
“I have always been a clubman wherever I have played, whether that’s my first club Chipstead RFC where I played from the age of five to eighteen, at John Fisher or at University where I immersed myself socially as well as on the rugby pitch. Yes, London Scottish may be a professional club but with the amateur side involvement it really does feel like a club with a good culture and I love that.”
McGeekie was one of the standout members of the 1st XV squad this year when the squad went down to the Minis Festival in November. Dom was coach of the U9s and had the children bursting with excitement and loving their morning of rugby.
“I loved that morning and helping out. It’s always an honour to be asked to do something and help this club. If I was not working on my days off, I would definitely help with the coaching side of things as much as I could at Scottish. I take a lot of pride in hanging around after games and having a drink in the members bar. I like the engagement with the supporters as this is a club steeped in history which I something I am continually getting more respect and understanding for.”
As Dom alludes to, he works in his days off from training and when pushed on what his plans are after rugby he has some pretty bold dreams. “Obviously a professional contract at Crystal Palace football club is the aim, maybe up front or in the midfield.” After hearing about Dom’s footballing abilities in the warm ups before training I think that aspiration may just be out of touch.
However, McGeekie did have some more reserved thoughts on his future, “I want to do something I enjoy after rugby. I have always liked teaching and coaching but I want to explore some opportunities to work in the city in sales or recruitment possibly. I just want to be successful in whatever I do, but right now my focus is playing for London Scottish.”
McGeekie embodies everything Dave Morris is trying to instil at London Scottish. A top professional who is working hard to get where he wants to be on the rugby field yet immersing himself in every possible avenue off the field too.
After admitting his love for his beloved Crystal Palace, he was offered an ultimatum. Would he prefer Crystal Palace to win the FA Cup or a victory over Richmond in a game he started in front of 2000 supporters. After a minute’s deliberation, McGeekie came to his conclusion with some negotiated terms, “beating Richmond, only if I was scoring the winning try in the last minute, that would be a monumental moment, I’d be pretty happy if Palace just stayed in the Premier League to be honest.”
An all round top professional and someone who is an integral part of this London Scottish squad. Watch Dom in action this weekend as he is named on the bench to take on Yorkshire Carnegie BUY YOUR TICKETS HERE