Powerhouse Argentina lock Manuel Carizza will join Western Province Rugby after his country’s November tour and will be available for the DHL Stormers’ 2014 Vodacom Super Rugby campaign.
The 37-Test star made his debut for the Pumas in 2004 and has become an ever-present in their second row, playing in 11 Rugby Championship matches in just two years.
Carizza was first discovered playing for the Jockey Club de Rosario, before moving his talents to Biarritz and Racing Metro in France’s Top 14 competition.
His arrival in Cape Town will bolster the DHL Stormers’ locking resources, with the likes of Eben Etzebeth, De Kock Steenkamp, Tazz Fuzani and Ruan Botha the current specialist second row options.
DHL Stormers coach Allister Coetzee told www.wprugby.com: “Manuel comes with a host of experience in one of the toughest leagues in the world – the Top 14.
“He’s also an automatic pick for Argentina, who boast a powerful pack of forwards, and we’re excited to get him into the mix here and part of our systems ahead of the 2014 Super Rugby competition.
“Gerbrandt Grobler will miss a large chunk of 2014 with his leg injury, whilst Manuel’s arrival will make up for Andries Bekker’s move to Japan.
“Also, a young guy like Ruan Botha had a strong Under-21 campaign this year and he could only benefit from playing and training alongside an international star like Manuel.”
MANUEL CARIZZA FACTFILE:
Born: August 23, 1984
Test debut: v South Africa – December 4, 2004