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Too many Saffas at Edinburgh?


  • 08 Jan 2014
Wicus Blaauw is one of six South Africans at Edinburgh Wicus Blaauw is one of six South Africans at Edinburgh

Some supporters are starting to question Edinburgh coach Alan Solomons' policy of importing players, rather than backing local talent.

Prop Willem Nel and lock Izak van der Westhuizen were already at the Scottish club when Solomons arrived last August. Since then, the former Kings coach has signed four more South Africans in prop Wicus Blaauw, flanker Cornell du Preez, centre Andries Strauss and flyhalf Carl Bezuidenhout, as well as English scrumhalf Tony Fenner and various Australians, New Zealanders and Argentinians.

Solomons has not added one Scottish player to his squad since joining the club, which concerns some supporters who believe he should be doing more to develop talent for the national side.

It also doesn't appear to have gone down too well with Edinburgh captain Greig Laidlaw, the Scotland scrumhalf, who acknowledged in an interview with The Telegraph that there was scope for disquiet.

'What is happening is happening,' said Laidlaw. 'Alan feels there is a need to bring in a few people he knows. That is out with my control. I came through the [Scottish club] system and was very grateful for that. We need to be careful where we are going because there is a lot of good young talent in Scotland that can come through and will come through.'

However, Solomons' way has brought relative success to the struggling club. Edinburgh won their first European Cup match in 18 months when they shocked Munster 29-23 at Murrayfield and then claimed an upset 16-10 away win against Gloucester in December. They are currently third in Pool 6 after four rounds of matches.

Edinburgh are eighth on the Pro12 log, with five wins and six losses.

Full article from The Telegraph

Why Cornell du Preez is attracting attention at Edinburgh

Photo: Ian MacNicol/Getty Images

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