Thursday, April 18, 2013

Leicester sign Gonzalo Camacho

Photo: UAR Rodrigo Vergara
Camacho en route to scoring against the All Blacks in La Plata
In recent weeks Gonzalo Camacho has not been taking to the field for the Exeter Chiefs. Both he and the club itself have made no secret of the fact that he will not be staying on at the club for another season. Having been linked to a move to Stade Français or Racing Métro it has instead been confirmed by the English media that Camacho will be instead moving to the Leicester Tigers on a two year deal that will see him join Argentina´s leading loosehead prop Marcos Ayerza. 

The 28 year old from Buenos Aires arrived at the Chiefs after having previously played for the Harlequins from 2009-2011 and helping the team win the Amlin Challenge Cup with the game´s only try in the final in Cardiff.  His move to Exeter was questioned due to the differing reputations of the two clubs. The Harlequins were, and are, genuine title contenders while the Chiefs were regarded as a lower-mid table side. Camacho though got plenty of game time and delivered. His success was rewarded with him winning the Gatorade Game Changer of the year award in 2012 for being the most important player in England. 

He debuted for Argentina in 2009 after having impressed playing for the national men´s Rugby Sevens team on the IRB World Sevens circuit. He was a part of the team that finished second at the 2009 World Cup in Dubai and with Argentina going through changes at the time he started in a new look back-three against England in the two-test series in June. Camacho started on the left wing, scoring a try in the second test win in Salta. Injuries prevented him from playing regularly again until in November 2010 when he was used as a the starting right winger for Los Pumas and has since held down the position. 

Camacho´s selection on the right wing in conjunction with the rise of Juan Imhoff has seen former Leicester Tigers winger Horacio Agulla become a back-up option. In November Camacho and Imhoff started in the win over Wales and the pair would appear likely to start in this years Rugby Championship. Agulla, however, appears likely to be used as a battering ram in the midfield. His performance from the bench in the match against Wales underlined his ability to give Argentina good go forward ball by having him run at defenders and set up quick-ball. He has started several matches in the midfield for Bath this season but continues to be largely used as a winger. 

Curiously Leicester refused to ofer Agulla a new contract after the 2011-2012 season due to his involvement with Argentina in the Rugby Championship. The club has been said to have regretted the decision as it has been =unable to get the same quality out of its other players. Agulla won try of the year for the Leicester Tigers in 2011-2012 and was also named in the ESPN Scrum Dream Team for the season. In going back on its word and signing a Puma on a two year deal, Camacho´s arrival at the club continues the recruitment of Pumas by English clubs. This year alone the likes of  Marcelo Bosch, Agustín Creevy, Julio Farías Cabello, Ignacio Mieres, Juan Pablo Orlandi,  Leonardo Senatore, Gonzalo Tiesi have all been signed by Aviva Premiership clubs.

Camacho has played twenty test matches for Argentina, including starting in four of Argentina´s five matches at Rugby World Cup 2011. Of his twenty appearances nineteen have been in the starting lineup and he has scored six tries.


  1. Wait a moment. They off loaded Agualla because of The RC,but their signing Camacho.

    Go forward and create your own future Argentina.

    France and England are playing with you!

    1. Sorry about that rant. You've got to love Argentina. Geographically they are nowhere. Samoa and the pacific isles big up of course, but southern hemisphere latino?

      Don't sound like rugby does it?

      Buenos Aries is the world capital of soccer. More professional clubs than any other city in the world and place that gave us the most gifted player the world has ever seen. Pele is the greatest, of course but that little indian Maradona won a world cup,...on his own (and his right hand).

      The pacific isles are surrounded by rugby. Latin America...well!

      Argentina stands on it own, no pro infrustructure and sod all money. Big spenders in France and England see Argentina as a comodity.

      I would love to see the day when Argentina can retain and look after all it's own players.

      I reckon that Argentina will be the first non speaking English nation to lift the webb Ellis trophy.

      You heard it from me first!

  2. Some of Cockerill's quotes this time last year regarding Agulla and how it was impossible to have Arggentines now look a bit silly.