TIME TO SAY GOODBYE 2019 - #1 Marcello Bosch
August 5 2019
Marcello Bosch will for me always be remembered for “That Kick”. Easter Sunday, 5th April 2015, in Colombes, a rather dingy Paris suburb. Saracens had sneaked into the quarter finals rather fortuitously having lost their final round match at the Stade Marcel Michelin with a battling performance only to discover Montpelier had inexplicably beaten Toulon allowing Sarries to claim the final quarter final place.
There is no doubt, Racing choked. Racing were leading 11-9 with the clock running down. They were playing a rather dangerous game of ruck after ruck when the eagle eyed Nigel Owens noticed a support player off his feet and raised his arm for the penalty. It was left of centre, and just into the Racing half – but straight into a strong breeze. Charlie Hodgson, playing fly-half, didn’t have the range, Alex Goode, who had shared the kicking duties, picked up the ball but it was Bosch who took it from him and prepared to kick. The home crowd whistled and booed, half the team, in common with me and many others, couldn’t watch, but that day, Bosch was the risen Messiah. He hit it perfectly and there was never any doubt. The image of him standing there, his arms raised aloft and a big grin on his face will stay with me forever. Sarries won and the rest is history. (Incidentally what a good excuse to relive that moment on youTube – go on, treat yourself!
Marcelo Tristan Bosch was born on 7th January in Buenos Aires, Argentina. He started his career with Belgrano Athletic Club before representing Argentina U21’s in 2005 and then the Pumas 7’s and Argentina A in 2006. He came to the notice of Serge Blanco, owner of French club Biarritz Olympique and Chelo was persuaded to leave his studies (he was doing a course in business) to join the French club that summer (their last as French champions), for a career as a professional rugby player. He remained in France until 2013, his performances also earning him 39 caps for Argentina. He came on from the bench to help Biarritz beat Toulon in the 2012 Challenge Cup Final. Bosch could clearly see the writing on the wall and he accepted an offer to join Saracens in 2013 – the season when Biarritz tumbled out of the top 14. He had featured for The Pumas at the 2011 World Cup who won 3 of their 4 pool games, qualifying for the knock-out stages. Chelo played in all the pool games (alongside Juan Figallo), starting the last 3 and kicking a conversion against Georgia. The story ended with a quarter final defeat against the All Blacks but once again Bosch’s boot got him on the scoresheet.
Chelo was dubbed as “the world’s sexiest player” by his Sarries team mates when he arrived in London. Despite the fact that most of the squads’ “WAGS” (not to mention their mothers) were in love with him, and kicking coach Dan Vickers named his dog “Bosch”, Chelo was a very popular and respected member of the team during his 6 years at Saracens. He was also very popular with the supporters, especially I believe, with ladies of a certain age! (But how would I know) The cry of “Bosch, Bosch, Bosch” ringing round the ground whenever Sarries were awarded a penalty somewhere near the halfway line became a familiar sound – whether Chelo was actually playing or not!
Chelo made 130 appearances for Saracens. He scored Sarries’ only try in the agonising Premiership final defeat to Northampton Saints that year – the year of the 2 final defeats. He also played in the Heineken cup defeat to Toulon and played for the whole 80 minutes in the Anglo-Welsh win over Exeter. He missed the Final win over Bath the following year (The Year of the Kick). Once again he was selected for Argentina in the 2015 World Cup, playing in the first 2 pool games and coming off the bench in the last. He missed out on the quarter final win over Ireland but returned for the semi-final defeat to Australia. The following year, he was on the bench for both the Heineken Cup victory over Racing and the Premiership Final win over Exeter.
Chelo featured in the Heineken Final in 2017 when Sarries beat Clermont in Edinburgh and was one of the few fit enough to make it to Sandy Park the week after for the semi-final defeat to Exeter. The following year he was once again on the bench for the Premiership Final victory against Exeter, replacing captain Brad Barritt for the last 30 minutes.
Chelo’s final season at Saracens was spent largely supporting the Storm team. His experience was invaluable as the youngsters won the Premiership Shield. His last appearance for Sarries was in the final home Premiership game against Exeter at Allianz in May. He did nothing special but he didn’t have to – he will always be remember for that day in Paris
Chelo has apparently had offers from France and South Africa but he has decided to leave rugby whilst still in his prime
Marcelo said : “We play rugby and we are blessed to play something that we love and even more so because we’re involved in a team like this one with very good human beings involved, great people behind the scenes as well – perhaps people who aren’t on the field or not the coaches but people you cross every day who have a smile on their face and it’s great to catch up with them as well.
“It will be sad to leave because when you’re in a place you’re very happy, you love loads of things and you have made amazing memories then it’s hard to let go. I want to remember this time of my life with a smile on my face and feel blessed to have lived here the past six years.”
Chelo will join Jupiter Marketing, initially in the UK but will then return to his roots to help the company expand to Peru. I suspect Racing will breathe a slight sigh of relief when we meet next season that there will be no shout of “Bosch, Bosch, Bosch” should Sarries win a penalty on half way. What a shame!pqs: qs:
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Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 2019:09:02:20:57:11 by Darraghgirl.
I hope we will still be making those calls of Bosch Bosch Bosch in years to come - and newer fans will ask the fans next to them ‘why do you shout that’
Points win matches: tries win hearts and minds.
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Please read and submit articles for publication. (*) As at October 31, 2018.
I will remember him for the footwork he had when he came which sadly went through age and injury, but he reinstated himself as a solid centre.
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