Rugby: Docherty defends foreign legion as Edinburgh seek balance for next term

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Edinburgh RUGBY chief executive Craig Docherty has defended bringing in non-Scots qualified players to augment the squad for next season.

The Gunners transfer activity has ranged from Georgian, New Zealand and Welsh internationalist signings through to a South African-born prop, WP Nel, who has been linked with qualifying for Scotland on residency in time for the 2015 World Cup.

But as well as kyboshing suggestions of residency qualification for Scotland Docherty said the transfer moves were carefully thought through. “We want to competing in both the Heineken European Cup and Rabo Direct Pro 12 League. (But) if it comes down to someone who is Scottish that is equal with somebody from outside we would obviously go for the Scots guy.

“We have got to get balances right,” he said. “In the front row. having someone come in like WP Nel or (Welshman) John Yapp can only good for the Robin Hislops.

“There is a development side of things along the lines of the Todd Blackadder model.

“We are not going to flood it with foreigners just for the hell of it.” Asked specifically about any plans to qualify players for Scotland on residency, Docherty said: “Michael Bradley (coach) is very proactive and has thought through a long-term play.

“I don’t see many guys moaning about Ulster bringing in Ruan Pienaar.”