Pierre Schoeman – South African Powerhouse Has Scotland Aspirations
He has made quite the impression on the Edinburgh Rugby community having arrived in the capital this summer, and this week Pierre Schoeman spoke to the media about his experience of Edinburgh so far, the opportunities that playing in the northern hemisphere presents and his aspiration to possibly play for Scotland.
Schoeman in training for the capital side (Photo: Edinburgh Rugby twitter)
Edinburgh experience so far
Since bursting on to the scene this season, South African prop Pierre Schoeman has been a barnstorming force for Edinburgh. Despite only having played a handful of games, it is clear that the forward is quickly becoming a fan-favourite.
He discussed his impact on Edinburgh so far, saying: “I am very pleased, but there’s still a lot to work on, especially the set piece.”
Schoeman detailed how he believed he could improve: “Guys like WP [Nel] who have been here for years and years and have that experience can help you – but he also gets the better of you at training.
“So there’s still a lot to work on, but I’m very happy with joining the boys and with their work ethic and professionalism. I’ve been blown away by how professional they are. Shakes after training, we take the weight and body fat week after week just to stay in top condition, and that’s quite nice.”
The 24-year-old is also enjoying the culture of the city out with the sport: “Now that I get the chance with the offer to play for Edinburgh and stay in Scotland I might as well make the best of it and enjoy the life, especially with my missus.”
He elaborated: “We got married in June so that’s quite nice. We went to the castle and we have actually watched the series Queen Mary of Scots so we’re up to date with the tactics and all the traditions and statistics.”
Big move from South Africa
For a young man from Pretoria, it is a very large upheaval to move your personal and professional life to a city in a country thousands of miles away. Schoeman stated that whilst it was a difficult decision to leave, the opportunity was worth it.
He explained: “My junior aspiration was to play 10 years there – if you’re good enough, play for the Springboks as well, settle in Pretoria on the farms having a good time.
“But I got the offer from coach Cockers and Edinburgh and it was awesome, also from the Scottish Rugby Union. It’s a great shift for me, especially in this time in my career as well…”
Scotland career is a future goal
Regardless of the fact that he has only been at Edinburgh for a couple of months, Schoeman is already considering an international future with Scotland: “My focus is on Edinburgh Rugby now, but for future’s sake my aspirations and dreams is to play for Scotland if I’m goof enough at that time.”
He added: “I’ll work hard for that, especially with coach Cockers who brings the best out of all our players.”
Since he only arrived in the capital this summer, Schoeman will have to adhere to the longer regulated time for residency. This doesn’t seem to dissuade the prop at all, however: “If it takes five years then it takes five years. I’m going to be here with a lot of caps like WP Nel.
“If there’s a twist or a glitch in the thing stating three years will be fine, that will also be awesome. If not, if it’s five years, then it’s five years, mate. I’ll just wait it out and commit to Edinburgh and after that play international if I’m good enough.”