Sunday, May 26, 2013

History beckons for Rodrigo Capó Ortega and Uruguay

Uruguay´s Rodrigo Capó Ortega set to play in the Top 14 Final
The term global game is one that can be thrown around without being taken seriously.  It carries such weight that it has indeed been used by authorities of countless nations as a marketing ploy more than a reflection of the state of rugby today and its prospective state in the future. But this weekend´s Top 14 Semi Finals in France delivered definitive cases which showed how much rugby has grown during the professional era. 

From a domestic standpoint this weekend´s Top 14 Semi Finals were testiments to the strength of the global game within one country. The city of Nantes has no team in either the Top 14 or the Pro d2 but it again delivered with 36,726 people in attendance on Friday and 36,242 on Saturday as Toulon and Castres won their respective Semi Finals by eliminating last years winners Toulouse and this seasons Heineken Cup runners-up, Clermont Auvergne. It was further reasoning to suggest that rugby can pull fans in all parts of the hexagon. 

From a global standpoint the Semi Finals showcased players from the world over in action. Los Pumas captain Juan Martín Fernández Lobbe put in a strong performance to eliminate Toulouse on Friday. He carried the flag for Argentina in the Heineken Cup Final and was one of two test players from American nations involved as Clermont fielded Canadian Jamie Cudmore. Fernández Lobbe is now set to have a rare chance of completing a double by winning the Heineken Cup and the Top 14 in the same season. He will again fly the flag for Argentina, but this time not for all of South America as he is set to play against a man from the other side of Rio de la Plata.

Fernández Lobbe will lock horns with arguably the greatest player ever produced by Uruguay, Rodrigo Capó Ortega. The Montevideo born secondrow started for Castres in the Semi Final win on Saturday against Clermont Auvergne in what was his 18th Top 14 match for the club this season. He got 65 minutes game time, leaving the field with the result virtually assured. Having played more than 200 matches for the club Capó Ortega now has the change to make history by being the first player from Uruguay to win the Top 14. He is now 80 minutes away from doing so as he will pay the match of his life next Saturday as Castres pay an unexpected visit to the Stade de France.

Capó Ortega´s long term service to the club has seen him play a decade of top flight rugby in South-Western France and he is contracted with the club until Rugby World Cup 2015. He has nto played for Uruguay since 2009 but his time at international level has not ended. He could very well make a return this November against either Canada or the USA in the North v South America play-off´s to determine who qualifies for England 2015 as Americas 2.

Rodrigo Capó Ortega has his own site. Click here for further information.

Castres v Clermont

No comments:

Post a Comment