Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Martín Rodríguez Gurruchaga Returns to PladAR

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Having ended his professional contract early, former Argentine international fullback Martín Rodríguez Gurruchaga is back in Argentina and is not on vacation. The 28 year old arrived back and in a matter of days began training in the PladAR facilities in his home town of Rosario.

After three seasons playing for the Parisian club Stade Français the Rugby World Cup 2011 fullback is back home in search of greater enjoyment after he explained that he was not enjoying himself at the club after he signed to extend his contract. With age still on his side he decided to leave France and he believes he made the correct decision. He is now looking at the possibility of playing for his club, Atlético del Rosario but is open to a possible return to professional rugby abroad. 

For Los Pumas it is good news as it means he will be able to represent Argentina in June 2014 when Ireland and Scotland will be visiting. Players contracted to European clubs who will be selected for the 2014 Rugby Championship will not be able to play against the visiting teams in June. Rodríguez Gurruchaga will not only be available to represent his country at the senior level but has also indicated that he is interested in returning to play Rugby Sevens for Argentina. 

Having not played for Argentina since the 2012 Rugby Championship Sevens may well be just what is needed and with changes set in 2014 for Los Pampas XV there are no guarantees that there will be a competition for the leading PladAR players. Argentina will no longer have a team compete in the Vodacom Cup. With Los Pampas XV now out of the South African competition the team´s possible participation in the Currie Cup starting in 2014 appears to be closer. In September 2012 there were advanced talks over the possibility with South Africa more than happy to have the Argentine team participate in the national rugby competition. 

Pumas Sevens to play in Orange
Should Rodríguez Gurruchaga be selected for the Argentine Sevens team then he would be wearing a very non-traditional shirt. It was revealed today that Argentina´s new Sevens Rugby shirt is to be a different color and one not associated with Argentine rugby. Indeed the new orange strip follows the policies of the suppliers, Nike, who took over from Adidas in 2012. The Nike supplied Pumas shirts changed the hoop to be angled and to take on a different shade of blue which some supporters said resembled that of Uruguay. The away strip which, under Adidas, was rarely used has been used against Australia and England already in 2013. In the Vodacom Cup Los Pampas XV have played in purple strips with Nike looking to replicate the use of pink uniforms made popular by Stade Français and subsequently used by others. 

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