Rugby

SA influx upsetting Scots

2014-01-08 14:23
Alan Solomons (Getty Images)
Cape Town - Edinburgh coach Alan Solomons's policy of bringing in South Africans has caused a stir among players and fans over fears the club is losing its Scottish identity.

Solomons, who joined Edinburgh from the EP Kings in August last year, has brought in a number of South Africans to bolster his squad.

When Kings centre Andries Strauss signed over the weekend, he became the sixth South African on Edinburgh's books. The others are loose forward Cornell du Preez, prop Wicus Blaauw, lock Izak van der Westhuizen, prop WP Nel and flyhalf Carl Bezuidenhout.

Solomons also brought in English scrumhalf Tony Fenner, while various Australians, New Zealanders and Argentines have been added to the squad as well.

But he hasn't added any new Scottish players. A couple have been invited in for trials, and few more are reportedly on Solomons's radar screen, but the new coach has largely ignored what he has found on his own doorstep.

And according to the Telegraph website, some supporters are starting to question the policy and Edinburgh captain Greig Laidlaw also acknowledged that there is scope for disquiet.

He made it clear he wasn't criticising the coach but said they "need to be careful" where they are going because there is a lot of good young talent in Scotland that can come through.

In one recent Pro12 game, against Irish side Ulster, Solomons sent out a side in which only one player, wing Dougie Fife, had been born in Scotland.

In their last competitive outing, against Glasgow, only two of the Edinburgh pack had learned their trade in Scotland. Five were products of the South African system and the one remaining pack member was Australian.

Read more on:    edinburgh  |  alan solomons  |  rugby
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