My conversation with Roddy Grant had been organised only a few hours before Scotland’s greatest ever sportsman shared with the world his innermost concerns about his future and, as it transpired, there were educative parallels to be drawn.

Like Murray he was born in 1987 and showed prodigious sporting talent, playing international age grade water polo before fully focusing on his rugby, to be plucked from the South African schoolboy game when his Scottish qualifications were identified and signed as a teenager by Border Reivers. Appointed captain of Edinburgh at the age of 22 he trained with the national team that season, was something of a regular for the Scotland A in the course of his career and was playing the best rugby of his career in his mid-to-late twenties.

Along with only Ross Ford and Tim Visser he was one of only three Edinburgh players to play on their two greatest days to date, in the 2012 Heineken Cup semi-final and in the 2015 European Challenge Cup final, starting the second of those when in his prime as a 28-year-old. A few days later came the beginning of the end.

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“That was pretty much it. I injured my knee the week after that game, so it was one of my last games,” he said.

“Looking back, it was a really frustrating one because we didn’t win a lot of silverware with Edinburgh, only the 1872 Cup, so that was a real disappointment in the career, but I was playing really good rugby and I really enjoyed that game and the atmosphere down there and that sort of occasion, but sadly there was not that much after that.”

There would be only five more appearances before he had to accept the inevitable, that his damaged knee was not up to the rigours of professional rugby.

“It was really difficult,” he admits. “I was 28 when I retired. In some ways I was really lucky that I felt I was playing my best rugby. Those last two years I was playing really well and really happy with how I was playing, so in some regards it’s nice to have gone out playing and with the injury, not having a long lay-off, it was pretty much play and then that was me, but the transition’s very difficult, psychologically, financially, everything.”

With close to a decade in the professional game already behind him and as a former Edinburgh captain, his standing helped eased the transition into the world of work as he was offered a coaching opportunity with the national academy, but it was still a bit of a shock to the system.

“As players you don’t realise how different it is, or how much free time you have,” Grant says with a laugh.

There is, though, appreciation of the second chance to be involved in professional sport and of the different type of gratification to be drawn from his new role.

“The highs of winning as a coach are massive, the lows as a coach are massive troughs as well and that’s the thing I love about sport, those ratios. I don’t love a low, but I do love that you can have a massive spike and high and that feeling, other than just a job,” he observes.

“I love seeing guys improve, or an area of a team improve that you see guys playing well and I guess as a player I was always aware of coaches helping me get better. I see that now if guys are playing well, whether I’ve had a big impact or a tiny one, you like to think you’ve helped and that gives me massive satisfaction.”

His performance at the academy earned him his current job, as forwards coach at Edinburgh and, working alongside former club-mates Calum MacRae, from Border Reivers days and Duncan Hodge, his job includes ensuring that head coach Richard Cockerill’s often rather bluntly delivered messages from his grandstand eyrie are relayed accurately.

“I’ve built a thick skin,” says Grant, laughing again.

“It’s actually something I really enjoy in my role, being on the side of the pitch taking on the messages. It’s great that you’re still part of a game and those messages and communications are really important for a team and I guess the way professional sport’s going all teams have that now.

“From a personal point of view it’s a great thing to build a skill of getting a message, processing it, getting it on quickly, saying it in the right tone to the players. It’s a challenge and like anything you can get really good at it and it’s a skill to be able to deliver things when the bullets are flying so to speak.”

As, then, this year’s European campaign gets to the business end, two back-to-back pool meetings with Stade Francais over the next two weekends, hopefully setting up what remains, in the history of Scottish rugby, a rare involvement in the knockout stages in Europe, he will still be intensely involved. There are, apparently, no regrets at not being able to do so as a player and even if he was on the field Grant would not be looking at the Challenge Cup as unfinished business after narrowly missing out to Gloucester in that 2015 final.

“I don’t think of it in that way,” he says. “It’s more that we’re on a new journey, with a new coaching staff and quite a few new players, so we want to do things as a squad to see where we are, whatever it is, both the Challenge Cup and Pro14 are equally important.

“We want to be one of the top sides, so it’s probably more a case of just getting as good as we can as a team, winning as many games as we can rather than anything else. Maybe individuals want to get that monkey off their shoulder, but I don’t think as a squad or as a group it’s for what has gone in the past, it’s much more of wanting to win every game. It’s not a focus of winning the cup, it’s the next two Stade games, we want to win them.”