The Brumbies have confirmed the signing of Argentine scrumhalf Tomas Cubelli ahead of the 2016 Super Rugby season, on a two-year deal.
Cubelli has 45 Test caps for Los Pumas, including the most recent Rugby World Cup in which Argentina finished third.
The signing is a major coup for the ACT franchise, with the new Argentinian Super Rugby franchise in 2016 that will boast 21 of its World Cup squad chasing Cubelli as well.
Brumbies head coach Stephen Larkham said he was confident that Cubelli would slot into his team’s systems, after meeting him during the Rugby Championship this year.
“We’ve seen through his performances in The Rugby Championship and the great form he showed at the Rugby World Cup, particularly against the All Blacks, Tomás has the necessary skills and knowledge of the game to successfully fit into our structure and be a game-breaker in Super Rugby,” he said.
Brumbies CEO Michael Jones said Cubelli would continue to develop at the Brumbies, alongside other world class inside backs.
“Tomás is a fantastic reader of the game, he is a great attacking scrumhalf and very physical,” he said.
“He has a great pass and solid kicking game which will really suit our style of play.
“I really think playing under Stephen Larkham and alongside world-class players such as Christian Lealiifano and Matt Toomua, Tomás will really come into his own.
“He has always had a desire to learn and grow as a player and we think we can help him do that here at the Brumbies.”
The 26-year-old is the latest of a handful of Argentinian players to play in Super Rugby, dating back to Patricio Noriega in 1996, who also signed with the Brumbies, something that Jones said is an advantage of a growing competition.
"Tomás brings something new, not only to the Brumbies but to the whole competition," he said.
“Super Rugby has established itself over 20 years as the premier rugby competition in the world and the dominance for the Southern Hemisphere nations confirms this.
"The innovation and the fluidity of players moving between clubs provides great quality rugby and the interest in rugby is growing every year. It is fantastic to see players from different nations lining up to play Super Rugby.”
Cubelli comes to Australia with the blessing of his local union as well, still available for Argentinian Test duty.
An Argentine Rugby Union (UAR) spokesperson said they fully supported his move to the Brumbies.
“Tomás has spoken of his desire to still represent Los Pumas while he is signed to the Brumbies and this contract will allow him to do so, which is great news for our national team, " the spokesperson said.
“Tomás is an Argentine player who has developed from grassroots to the professional game. Entry to Super Rugby will give our top players, like Tomás, an incredible opportunity to grow and our fans the chance to enjoy watching our elite players going up against the best players in the world.”