Why Creevy still rocks for Irish just weeks from his 37th birthday
London Irish boss Declan Kidney has explained why he was determined to keep Agustin Creevy at the Gallagher Premiership club even though the veteran Argentine hooker is just weeks away from his 37th birthday. Creevy last week agreed to a one-year extension to his existing deal with the Exiles amid speculation that he was wanted by some clubs in France.
Given his age, it would have been understandable if the Irish hedged their bets and decided to go with younger players for the 2022/23 season. However, Creevy has been in such exceptional form this season that he is currently joint top try scorer along with Saracens’ Max Malins, scoring nine in his eleven league outings, while he also added two more tries for good measure in his sole Challenge Cup appearance.
It’s the sort of strike rate that would make the record-breaking Sam Simmonds envious, but this knack for finding the try-line didn’t even get a mention from Irish director of rugby Kidney when asked by RugbyPass about the impact of Creevy, the 89-cap Los Pumas forward who harbours ambitions of making the 2023 World Cup even though he hasn’t been capped since the 2019 tournament in Japan.
“The perfect fit is always a difficult word, but it’s just his personality. He is a very good person and we wouldn’t be the first team to say that good people make good players. He brings all that experience with him.
“Look, he has been at more team meetings and has worked with more coaches (than anyone). He has worked through it all and his enthusiasm has never waned and it’s his whole enthusiasm for playing the game really that makes him such a good fit.
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“You see his effect on all the front five really just in terms of his technical ability, in terms of the props and all the help he is giving them. He is a veteran by age but he has kept himself very fit, he is a very good scrummager, his lineouts are excellent, he has a calmness about him and he has the experience as a captain of an international side and he brings that to play as well then too in it. He has quite a number of factors about him that make him a very valuable player to us.
“It’s just how he goes about his business. He is at training all the time, he just does everything that he is asked to do and that little bit more. He enjoys his rugby and is just a pleasure to work with.
“He is (bucking the trend in the game towards youth) but it just goes to show what can be done if you look after yourself. He is not the only player doing it. Jimmy Gopperth is doing it up in Wasps and others have done it. Donncha O’Callagher has done it, Peter Stringer, so there are plenty of players that have done it well and beyond the age that Gus is at the moment.”
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