Edinburgh sign Georgia's Dimitri Basilaia from Valence d'Agen

New Edinburgh signing Dimitri Basilaia
Basilaia started for Georgia against Scotland in the 2011 Rugby World Cup

Edinburgh have signed Georgia number eight Dimitri Basilaia from Valence d'Agen, subject to to a working visa.

The 26-year-old, 23-times capped forward will arrive at Murrayfield for the start of next season.

Basilaia has been an ever-present for his country since 2008 and started World Cup 2011 matches against Scotland, Romania and England.

Edinburgh head coach Michael Bradley said: "Dima has a tremendous work ethic and attitude to the sport."

Bradley first noticed the player, presently with the Federale 1 club in France, when he was technical coach for Georgia prior to joining Edinburgh.

"He's a fantastic fit for this club and will contribute a huge amount to an increasingly aggressive and combative forward unit at Edinburgh Rugby, while his ball handling skills are such that we can maintain and strengthen our fast-paced, offloading game," he said.

The forward, who scored his second international try in the World Cup match against England, is regarded as key to the physically strong game for which the Georgian side is renowned.

And he spoke of his excitement at joining Edinburgh and promised to live up to the supporters' expectations of him.

"The arrival of a new player always heightens supporters' enthusiasm and anticipation and I will not spare any efforts to meet those expectations from the moment I arrive in the capital," said Basilaia.

"I'm in great shape, both physically and spiritually, and can't wait to pull on the black and red shirt of Edinburgh Rugby."

Edinburgh currently sit second-bottom of the RaboDirect Pro12 League, but a 19-14 victory over Toulouse put them through to the semi-finals of the Heineken Cup - the first time a Scottish side has reached that stage.

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