Monday, March 25, 2013

Marcelo Bosch signs for Saracens

Marcelo Bosch en route to score v France in Lille, November 2012
The future of Marcelo Bosch has been clouded all season long. The long time servant of Biarritz Olympique in the Top 14 will not be staying at the French club but where exactly he will go is a question yet to be answered. Bosch has been playing for Biarritz in 2006 and has been used in four positions - flyhalf, fullback and in both inside and outside centre. Were it not for injuries he would have likely played most of his rugby for the club at flyhalf but his knee injury while playing fullback in 2009 turned out to bring about changes  as upon returning he went on to play at outside centre and succeded for both club and country. 

Bosch started Argentina´s only pre-World Cup test in 2011 at outside centre and performed well. He was back-up to Gonzalo Tiesi for the World Cup but ended up taking over when Tiesi was forced out of the World Cup in the first half of Argentina´s first match of the tournament. Tiesi recovered from knee surgery to return for Stade Français in 2012 but then had to undergo shoulder surgery which meant Argentina would again be without his services for the test matches in 2012. He did recover to play at outside centre against Wales and France in November 2012 and he did prove to still have the talent as he set up Bosch for a well worked try against France in Lille and shut down the large Welsh backs - Alex Cuthbert, George North and Jamie Roberts. 

Bosch played against the French at inside centre and then the Irish at outside centre after having missed out on facing Wales. The reason was that Biarritz did not want him, or Francisco Gómez Kodela, playing test rugby that weekend. After having been without the services of Bosch during The Rugby Championship the club put its foot down and since then has been using Bosch mostly as a reserve. The poor use of Bosch this season has conincided with the club´s decision not to extend his contract and this has put him on the market for rival French and English clubs. Followers of The Rugby Championship know all to well that he is a highly talented player who is of the required standards for the Top 14 or Aviva Premiership. Bosch earned plenty of praise, particularly for his defense against the All Blacks in Wellington in the round three match. 

Biarritz, though, is cleaning house. Last season both Eusebio Guiñazú and Manuel Carizza were forced out due to both players being committed to playing for Los Pumas in The Rugby Championship. Indeed, both players joined Bosch in the starting lineup throughout the tournament and since then both have moved on to other clubs. Guiñazú joined Bath while Carizza joined Racing Métro and many Pumas are also changing clubs in a similar manner - from France to England, from England to France or to a rival team in the same country. Bosch´s rival for the Pumas outside centre position, Tiesi now plays for London Welsh while his rival for the inside position , Santi Fernández, could well be playing for Castres rather than Montpellier next season. Bosch´s future will also be different and the clubthat has been leaked as his possible destination is in England. French rugby´s bible Midi Olympique said today  that Bosch will be leaving France to play in England for the 2011 Champions, Saracens.

Bosch has earned 18 test caps and is likely to be in the World Cup squad in 2015. 

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