With the Pro12 finishing the regular season this weekend and Edinburgh out of the playoff challenge, Tim Visser will call time on his Edinburgh Rugby career having long since established himself as part of the club’s record books.
When the little-known Dutchman was brought north of the Border to ply his trade on the Edinburgh wing by then head coach Andy Robinson, eyebrows were raised and questions asked.
This was of course, long before project signings were talked about, but Visser was a player who had struggled to break through into the Newcastle Falcons side that was hardly glorious.
Visser made an instant impact in the Scottish capital, with Edinburgh’s willingness to throw the ball about lending opportunities aplenty for the rangy winger.
He thrived in the Celtic League, and notched an impressive 50 points in his first season, and was named in the Team of the Year after a hugely impressive breakthrough season in the black and red.
Already there were rumblings that the 6ft 4’ winger might one day play for Scotland, despite needing another two years to qualify on World Rugby’s residency grounds, but he had displayed imperious try-scoring exploits in his maiden season at Murrayfield that made him worth the talk.
He was also named the league’s Young Player of the Season, with a free-flowing Edinburgh attack, marshalled by Mike Blair, Nick De Luca and Ben Cairns, allowing the big winger countless opportunities to catch the eye.
Visser would go on to better his 2009/10 achievements the following season, when he set a new Celtic League try-scoring record, as he went over 14 times, to not only clinch the Top Try Scorer award, but also a second consecutive place in the Team of the Year.
Into his third year – the biggest yet for the soon-to-be-qualified Scotsman, and the club were fighting on two fronts, with away wins over London Irish and Racing Metro, alongside a 48-47 comeback win over the French side at Murrayfield, in which Visser scored twice, to book a historic place in the Heineken Cup quarter-finals for only the second time.
In the last eight match at Murrayfield, the big Dutchman’s defensive frailties were exposed as he let Timoci Matanavou scamper past him for Toulouse’s solitary try. Still, Visser can add an appearance in the Heineken Cup semi-finals to his rugby CV.
By the summer of 2012 it was clear he was destined to don the dark blue of Scotland, as once more he was named in the Pro12 Team of the Year, and named the Player of the Season in 2011/12.
With few out and out try-scorers in a low-scoring side, his first cap came in Fiji at the earliest opportunity. Visser marked the occasion with a pair of tries, catching the eye on the hard track in Lautoka.
More recently, he missed almost all of the 2013/14 season after suffering a horrific leg injury in October, making just eight appearances for Edinburgh under Alan Solomons, and under the guidance of the South African, Edinburgh play a more conservative style. Visser has found tries harder to come by, although his tally for the current season stands at five from 17 appearances.
He will hope to add to that this weekend with one last ‘Toot and Salute’, his famous celebration, for the Black and Red Army to enjoy, before he makes the trip to Harlequins next season and the next stage of his career.
He arrived as a little-known Dutchman six years ago, but Tim Visser will make his 129th Edinburgh appearance on Saturday, firmly established among the club’s greats, and with 12 caps for his adopted nation to boot. Despite the rise of Tommy Seymour and the appearance of Sean Maitland on the Scottish wings, that figure may well increase during the World Cup this year.
After all, tries are always welcome.