Sharks CEO Brian van Zyl has confirmed that they are involved in discussions surrounding the signing of Argentinean utility back Juan Martin Hernandez but has denied various reports suggesting the deal is done and dusted.
Craig Lewis writes for the Daily News.
Several rugby websites reported yesterday that Hernandez has agreed to a one-year contract with the Sharks, but Van Zyl emphasised that nothing was set in stone.
“Reports that he has already signed are unsubstantiated. We are in discussions with him but nothing has been finalised. We are hoping to sign him for the upcoming Currie Cup and next year’s Super 14, but at this stage the ball is in their court and I have no idea when or if the proposed contract will be finalised.”
Hernandez, who is nicknamed “El Mago” (the Wizard) for his prodigious abilities and capability of playing flyhalf, centre and fullback, would undoubtedly be a major coup for the coastal franchise.
The Argentinian has spent the past six seasons with French club, Stade Francais, during which time they won the Top 14 in 2004 and 2006, and made it to the Heineken Cup final in 2005.
The 26-year-old has also starred for Argentina over the last few years and was nominated as IRB Player of the Year in 2007 after proving to be one of the standout performers at the World Cup in France.
Sharks coach John Plumtree said it would be a fantastic signing if it materialised.
“Hernandez is really an outstanding player, he’s a very well-rounded and well-balanced player. I think he has a strong desire to come to the Sharks and the family atmosphere that we have here has been communicated to him. We saw how well Fred (Michalak) fitted in last year but we will just have to wait and see what happens.”Tweet