Edinburgh’s South African-born fly-half Jaco van der Walt has penned an extension deal with the club.
Van der Walt, who has one Scottish cap to his name, was yesterday named in Gregor Townsend’s Six Nations squad and is upbeat about his future.
“I have fallen in love with this city. My wife and I have made it our home and we’re delighted to have committed to spending our future together in Edinburgh.
“It’s been absolutely brilliant, and my family and the club have played a huge role in supporting my wife and I and encouraging us to chase our dreams.
“Playing here has definitely tested my game. I’ve really had to develop my skills. I still have a lot more to learn about the game and I’m excited to grow and develop those skills with Edinburgh.
“The club is in a good place and we’re building a really strong side. It’s important we continue playing the game we know, stay positive and work hard.
“For Edinburgh Rugby to have its own home ground is so important and hugely exciting for all of us – players and supporters.
“It gives us an identity and to have the fans come back to watch our games in our own home ground will be great.
“As a team, we can’t wait to have our supporters back in the stands when it’s safe to do so. We feed off their energy and can’t wait to welcome them back.”
It is true to say that Van der Walt has much to offer with his abrasive defence and courageous attack, as well as an enviable kicking ability – he recently picked up the Guinness PRO14 Golden Boot award, with a kicking accuracy of 86.84%.
Edinburgh Head Coach Richard Cockerill said:
“Jaco has been a very consistent performer since joining the club in 2017. We’re delighted he’s staying here in Edinburgh.
“His attacking attributes, kicking ability, bravery in defence and overall knowledge of the game are pivotal to the way we play and he’s been a top-class operator in the number 10 jersey for the last three years.
“We were thrilled to see him make his Scotland debut at the tail end of last year. Jaco has worked incredibly hard on his game and showed he was capable of making that step up to international rugby. It meant a great deal to him and we were all really proud of his achievement.
“Jaco is a good man who takes great pride in representing Edinburgh and Scotland. It’s a huge boost to have him extend his stay here.”