Pierre Schoeman: Edinburgh close in on signing of South African prop

Pierre Schoeman in action for the Bulls
Loose-head prop Pierre Schoeman (right) is poised to join Edinburgh next season

Edinburgh are close to securing the signature of South African prop Pierre Schoeman from the Bulls.

The 23-year-old has been capped at Under-20 level and would join Richard Cockerill's squad at the end of his Super Rugby commitments.

Schoeman is primarily a loose-head and has started all five of the Bulls' 2018 Super Rugby fixtures.

He is not tied to South Africa and could become eligible for Scotland after five years of residency.

Edinburgh have also been linked with Scotland back-row Luke Hamilton, who plays for Cockerill's former club Leicester Tigers.

However, with Scotland captain John Barclay arriving in the summer, BBC Scotland understands the club has no desire and limited budget to sign further back-rows.

Instead, Cockerill is targeting two new props, the first of which is likely to be Schoeman, who stands just over 6ft tall and weighs 118kg (18st 8lb).

Pierre Schoeman carries ball for South Africa Under-20 against Scotland Under-20
Pierre Schoeman has played against Scotland Under-20 for South Africa

He played for South Africa Under-20 at the 2014 Junior World Championship, during which he came up against his Scottish counterparts.

The prop has spent his entire senior career with the Pretoria-based Bulls.

Edinburgh have suffered a spate of prop injuries this season.

Scotland veteran Al Dickinson, 34, has not played a competitive game in over a year, fellow international loose-head Allan Dell has been out since October, while Scotland's autumn surprise package, Darryl Marfo, only returned last week from a four-month spell on the sidelines.

WP Nel and Rory Sutherland have also been out injured for chunks of the campaign, with Cockerill forced to recruit several alternatives on short-term contracts and loan deals.

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