Tom Bradshaw: Bath Rugby boss Gold's move for Agulla is shrewd
The last time Horacio Agulla was seen near a blue, black and white shirt, he was scoring a try against Bath on the final day of Leicester's regular season.
Confirmation this week that Agulla has penned a deal with Bath Rugby means that the winger is treading what's becoming a well-worn path from the Tigers to The Rec. First, Lewis Moody and Sam Vesty left Leicester to join Bath ahead of the 2010-11 campaign. A year later, Dan Hipkiss followed in their tracks.
The difference with Agulla is that his trip from the East Midlands to the West Country is via Argentina. And there, for some, lies the rub.
With the Pumas competing in the new southern hemisphere Championship and then having a busy November of autumn internationals, Bath are unlikely to see much of their new signing until close to Christmas.
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I rate Agulla highly. On top of his skills as a finisher, he knows how to bring the crowd into a game. Watching him at Welford Road at the end of last season there was some terrific interaction between him and the Tigers' fans.
Like Tom Biggs, a flash of expectancy ripples through the crowd whenever he gets his hands on the ball. The prospect of Biggs and Agulla on the wings is bound to be a crowd-pleaser at The Rec.
But his deal is a slight surprise because Bath chairman Bruce Craig gets frustrated at the amount of time internationals are taken away from the Premiership.
Craig wrote some thought- provoking programme notes last year about the season's structure.
A key plank in Craig's vision – as he articulated last season – is for the separation of international and club campaigns. If there is no overlap, then clubs can field their best players for all their key games.
But, for now, Craig and Bath can only operate within the current structure. And such a structure, for good or ill, means star players can be absent for chunks of the season.
Agulla's situation is really no different to that of another new signing, Paul James, who is likely to be away with Wales for the autumn internationals and then the Six Nations.
Which is why Leicester's decision to let Agulla go because of international commitments is illogical – and why new Bath head coach Gary Gold looks to have pulled off a canny move.