Parker penned in for Titans as Edinburgh release nine

Perry Parker scores for Melrose on release from Edinburgh
Perry Parker scores for Melrose on release from Edinburgh
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Second row Perry Parker looks set to become the first of Edinburgh Rugby’s newly released players to find a new club.

The 26-year-old is believed to be on the radar of Premiership chasing Rotherham. The Titans go into the second leg of a Championship play-off semi-final against Bristol only three points adrift after the away leg.

A total of nine players have failed to have contracts renewed and the Evening News understands that a substantial number of others will soon follow as coach Alan Solomons clears the decks after finishing eighth in the Pro 12 league.

In a continuation of a policy that has proved controversial, it is likely that Solomons will keep looking to South Africa for resources with a Scots qualified wing/full back already scouted.

Another target is said to be a second row, where Natal Sharks’ Anton Bresler is on the shopping list along with another back row.

Of the nine players released it is prop forward Lewis Niven who could have the best prospects. Agent Gordon Hood, of the Rugby Partnership, assessed the market and said: “Prop forwards like Lewis are always in demand because of the (physical) nature of the game. However, the situation has to be set against the fact that English clubs can receive £25-£30,000 a month from their governing body if they include 15 English qualified players in a match-day squad.

“That is a big incentive to recruit within their own country.”

Fitting that criteria is Parker, who signed from Esher in 2012 and has latterly been on loan at Ospreys.

It was revealed last week that Dimtri Basilaia would be moving to France where many of his Georgian international colleagues are based ahead of next year’s World Cup.

All Black centre Ben Atiga was close to returning to New Zealand midway through a deal that has now expired but those on the lookout for new clubs nearer home are Test winger Lee Jones and hooker Alun Walker as well as scrum halves Alex Black and Chris Leck. That leaves second row Rob McAlpine who has been interesting English Championship clubs but any move was restricted by his desire to obtain a degree.