Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Ignacio Rodríguez Muedra will join Clermont

One of the stars from the 2010 IRB Junior World Cup is set to play for French Top 14 champions - Clermont next season. The contract is scheduled to be signed in February as Ignacio Rodríguez Muedra will join Australia´s Brock James and Samoa´s Tasesa Lavea to bolster the clubs flyhalf stocks. The 20 year old from Tucuman was in France training with Clermont on a trial basis with the club analyzing him as a player to determine whether or not he has what it takes to play for the club.

In an interview with Argentine rugby website - Rodríguez Muedra commented about the positive experiences he had had with the club´s management and players. High profile international players at the club including Brock James and former All Black Sione Lauaki both welcomed him and helped him out in training sessions. Rodríguez Muedra commented on the passing skills of Brock James and how James has been assisting him with his own progression. He is significantly younger than both players with James aged 30 and Lavea 31. The club does have two other players capable of playing flyhalf who play in other  positions  - former South African international Brent Russell and former French international Benoît Baby. Russell is aged 31 and Baby 27. Both get more game time for Clermont on the wing than anywhere else but neither are first choice players. The club, is thus really looking to the future in signing the 20 year old Argentine specifically as a flyhalf.

The next generation of Los Pumas is already seemingly on track with the prospect of Felipe Contepomi retiring from international duty following Rugby World Cup 2011 not appearing as bad it perhaps would. Aside from Contepomi Argentina has an impressive list of playmakers playing at the top level in Europe including Marcelo Bosch (Biarritz), Santiago Fernández (Montpellier), Martín Rodriguez Gurruchaga (Stade Français), Juan Martín Hernández (Racing Metro) in France and Ignacio Mieres (Exeter) and Benjamin Urdapilleta (Harlequins) in England. Only Contepomi and Hernández played at Rugby World Cup 2007 and there will certainly not be enough room for them all for New Zealand 2011.

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