Edinburgh have been bolstered by the news that Ross Rennie and Nick De Luca, two of the club's most prominent players, have signed contract extensions.
Loose forward and midfield stalwarts for club and country, Rennie and De Luca returned from Six Nations duty to pen two-year deals at the club, keeping them in contract until 2014.
The players have been fundamental to the side's successes this season, with De Luca's ability to line-break and create space crucial to the club's expansive approach and try-scoring feats of winge Tim Visser and Lee Jones, while the work-rate, ball playing and ball winning of Rennie – a nominee for the Six Nations player of the championship – is an invaluable resource to any top tier team.
Their commitment is a timely boost for head coach Michael Bradley and his men who prepare for two crucial matches at Murrayfield against Scarlets in the Pro12 this Friday followed by the Heineken Cup quarterfinal with Toulouse on Easter Saturday.
The Irishman has now retained the services of 19 of the club's top performers for the next two seasons, while the club have announced that Free State Cheetahs prop WP Nel and Northampton Saints utility back Greig Tonks are among the new faces set to run out in black and red next season.
Bradley said: "It's fantastic news for Edinburgh Rugby that players of the calibre of Ross [Rennie] and Nick [De Luca] have committed these crucial years of their rugby careers to the club.
"They've played some tremendous rugby this season, showing the commitment, style and professionalism that we look to foster in all of our players here at Murrayfield.
"Both will play a key role in the bright future being pieced together at this club and I’m delighted that they're here to stay."
De Luca, who grew up in Lockerbie, has been a pivotal player for Edinburgh since joining the club from Border Reivers in the summer of 2007.
The classy centre is regarded as one of Scotland's most creative customers and has developed into a key figure for the club and country, with a place in his nation's historic 2010 series victory in Argentina among the highlights of his 33 Test-cap career, which began during the 2008 Six Nations championship against France.
This season a new partnership with young inside centre Matt Scott has seen the pair thrive through a shared enthusiasm for expansive rugby, which has allowed De Luca to showcase his attacking abilities in the black and red.
He said: "I'm really enjoying my rugby in Edinburgh. Our progress in the Heineken Cup has made this season a real landmark for even the most experienced players.
"Despite these highlights it's clear to all the players that we have opportunities to improve as individuals and as team, combining a committed group of players who are signing on to something special with exciting new arrivals in the seasons ahead."
Rennie, Edinburgh's home-grown 'magnificent seven', exemplifies the club's top performers and has long been a cornerstone of the Murrayfield side; his show-stopping commitment and talent often earning comparisons with the world’s premier openside flankers.
A knee injury meant that Rennie was absent from the international scene for two years after his 2008 debut against Ireland however he earned a recall for the 2010 Autumn Tests, the 2011 Six Nations Championship and Rugby World Cup, where a series of spirited performances made the number seven shirt his own throughout the 2012 Six Nations.
Rennie, who is arguably in the form of his career, said: "Having grown up in Edinburgh it means a lot to me to represent this club so I'm delighted to have extended my contract and to have secured the chance to play for the club I grew up supporting.
"Personally I'm in a good place just now. I'm happy with the way I'm playing for both the club and Scotland. I've made these developments as a player at this club and I'm confident that this is the right place for me to continue to improve.
"There's definitely a different atmosphere around the club at the moment. There's a lot of optimism about where we're going and I'm looking forward to being a part of that future."
Gilbert has released a new line of rugby cleats. The Gilbert Virtuo 8S is part of the exciting new product. Check it out.
The entire All Blacks apparel line has been updated for 2013/14. Check out the New Zealand All Blacks polo.
The Nike Tiempo is a solid rugby cleat and one of few styles still made from full-grain natural leather.
The Gilbert Blitz 8S rugby cleat is a great cleat at a great price of $69.99. Get a new pair of cleats today.
A cool looking all black rugby cleat with the high performance adidas is known for. Get in the Gear!
Wear the crest of the British and Irish Lions on your t-shirt. A great look for the summer.
The All Blacks Performance t-shirt is black with hints of blue from the training jersey. Very Cool.
The New Zealand All Blacks training jersey for 2013/14. Get in the Gear!
The USA Rugby Pro Alternate rugby jersey is perfect for any fan of the Eagles. Get yours to wear during the summer Test matches.
The NEW All Blacks 2013/14 jersey has arrived at World Rugby Shop. Dare to wear the colors of the All Blacks.