Chiefs add Rimmer from Pirates and Votu from Fiji 7s

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Chiefs add Rimmer from Pirates and Votu from Fiji 7s Empty Chiefs add Rimmer from Pirates and Votu from Fiji 7s

Post by AsLongAsBut100ofUs on Thu May 31, 2012 8:47 am

From today's E&E:

Baxter lays down gauntlet to new signing Rimmer

Rob Baxter has challenged new signing Carl Rimmer to work hard to make the step up from the Championship after making the switch to Exeter Chiefs.

The 26-year-old loosehead prop has spent the last three seasons with the Cornish Pirates, after missing an entire campaign because of a neck injury.

And joining him at Sandy Park next term could be Fijian winger Watisoni Votu, with head coach Baxter revealing a deal has been agreed with the 26-year-old – provided he wins a full cap.

The former Fiji sevens captain needs to start a Test to be eligible for a visa and is in a 24-man squad for the Pacific Nations Cup opener against hosts Japan on Tuesday.

While Votu's arrival is dependent on him winning a cap, Rimmer becomes Baxter's eighth new recruit for the 2012/13 campaign.

The Sandy Park boss has been looking to add to his resources at loosehead, with seniors Brett Sturgess and Ben Moon both suffering injuries last term, and thinks Rimmer fits the bill.

"It's a position I've been looking to add to for six months," said Baxter.

"A couple of times last season we saw when either Ben Moon or Brett Sturgess were injured we had to shuffle our pack around in a way that we probably didn't want to.

"With Carl's good form, being based at a local club and being the right age, and with the way he tested when we had a look at him, it made sense to go with him.

"He's had a very good season, being players' player has proven that, but in these latter stages (of the Championship play-offs) he's come through very strong and we think he's got the raw materials for us to work with.

"We're going to expect him to thrive and take every opportunity that comes along from being involved with a Premiership club, just like a lot of our guys who stepped up from the Championship with us.

"They have used the Premiership to improve themselves as players, they've used it to drive the way they've worked in the conditioning sessions, used it to drive the way they trained and played and it's moved them forward.

"He can't come to us and stand still, he needs to come to us and do what our other guys have done and not sit down and just watch it happen around him."

Rimmer, who stands 6ft tall and weighs 18st 8lbs, wasted no time agreeing to the move once Baxter made contact a few weeks ago.

The forward said: "It's a chance for me to play in the Premiership and it was a no-brainer.

"It (the opportunity) came quite late in the season, but there was never any doubt in my mind about anything when it came along – I ripped his hand off."

If speedster Votu, who is 6ft 1in tall and weighs 14st 9lbs, doesn't feature against Japan then he has three other opportunities to win a cap in June, as Fiji play Samoa in Tokyo on June 10 before returning home to face Scotland on June 16 and Tonga on June 23, both in Lautoka.

Baxter said: "He needs to start and we can start applying for a visa then and hopefully we can get him over here as soon as we can and get him stuck into a pre-season.

"He's agreed a contract based on him having a cap. It's either there or it's not based on what happens in the Pacific Nations Cup.

"It's all lined up but A we've got to wait for him to get a cap and B we've got to wait for a successful visa application and you never know what could happen with either."


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Chiefs add Rimmer from Pirates and Votu from Fiji 7s Empty Re: Chiefs add Rimmer from Pirates and Votu from Fiji 7s

Post by sirtidychris on Thu May 31, 2012 1:23 pm

I really like Richard Baxters approach to building a squad, he has a knack of seeing the potential in players other sides would overlook and bringing in quality for low money, while other teams spend big bucks on SH stars that don't always live up to the hype

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