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Lezana hoping to get Scarlets moving forward

New Scarlets signing Tomas Lezana.

Lezana hoping to get Scarlets moving forward

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New Scarlets signing Tomas Lezana believes Llanelli is the best place for him to improve and is aiming to give the west Walians some go forward.

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The 39 times capped Argentina international is comfortable playing across the back-row and will join the Scarlets from Western Force for next season.

Lezana, 27, has forged a reputation as a dynamic ball carrier and a strong defender.

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And he hopes he can add a different dimension to the Scarlets back-row next season where he will compete with the likes of Blade Thomson, Aaron Shingler, Josh MacLeod, James Davies and Sione Kalamafoni for a starting place.

“I like the tournament and  I like the club and fans of Wales,” he said.

“The rugby in Wales has improved a lot over the last six years and I want to improve my rugby.

“Scarlets for me is the best choice and the best place for me to improve. My focus will be on my attack because that’s an area I want to improve. I want to be able to bring some dynamism to the back-row.

“I love the physical side of things and I like to take the ball forward. My favourite position is No 8 but I can play across the back-row. I’m a strong ball carrier and I want to get the Scarlets going forward.

“I enjoy the work at the breakdown and I can help get the Scarlets on the front foot. I’ve been told that the focus of the Scarlets over the next few years is to try and win tournaments.

“I want the same as them. I want to be really competitive and I think I can help them win games. I would like to help the club get to where they want to be.”

Growing up as a football-mad River Plate supporter in the Argentinian city of Santiago del Estero, Lezana dreamed of a career with a round ball rather than an oval one.

But now the Pumas flanker is a Test rugby star, and after helping his country to a famous win over the All Blacks last autumn, Lezana is now set to embark on a new chapter of his career in west Wales.

“Rugby in the region I come from is not strong at all,” said the 27-year-old.  “Football is like a religion there.

“I played a lot of football growing up and I still love playing football when I’m on holiday.  I’m a die-hard River Plate fan and Lionel Messi is my favourite player.

“In Argentina, my dream was to be like Juan Manuel Leguizamon who is from my club and it was an honour to play with him. He was a world-class player with great values and I try and model my game on him.

“It’s an ambition of mine to start regularly for the Pumas. There’s immense competition for places in the Pumas back-row.

“We have some really good players in the back-row like Facundo Isa, Pablo Matera and Marcus Kremer but if I perform consistently well for the Scarlets then I’m hoping I can start for the Pumas.

“I played when we beat the All Blacks recently and it was amazing for me and the team because they are the best team in the world.”

Lezana is currently recovering from a foot problem which has ruled him out of facing Wales with Argentina this summer.

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