Edinburgh coach Alan Solomons has stated his determination to the reach out to the Borders, writes Alan Lorimer.
Speaking after Edinburgh’s 21-15 win over Newcastle Falcons at Mansfield Park last Friday, the former assistant Springbok coach said: “Coming from South Africa I’ve always regarded the Borders as the heartland of rugby in Scotland.
“I think it’s very important that we draw the Borders close into our club.”
The Murrayfield-based pro side played two games in the Borders recently, losing narrowly to Leicester Tigers at The Greenyards in the first.
“A lot of the clubs in the Borders have very good grounds,” added Solomons.
“We enjoyed playing at Melrose and it was an equally good experience at Hawick. But what this is all about is taking the game to the Borders.
“At Gala we had a training camp and had a dinner with lots of famous players like Roy Laidlaw, Alan Tait, John Jeffrey and Derrick Patterson.
“I want to strengthen that link. That’s more important than the grounds we play on. I think that having a close relationship with the Borders is critical.”
Solomons, who has Borderer Steve Scott as one of his assistant coaches and Kelso analyst Murray Fleming in his team, has since recruited Patterson to do specialist work at Edinburgh.
“Derrick is now involved with us coaching our scrum halves one session in the week,” he confirmed.