Leicester Tigers: Argentina hooker Julian Montoya joins ahead of schedule

Julian Montoya in action for Argentina
Julian Montoya made his Argentina Test debut at the age of 20 against Uruguay in May 2014

Leicester Tigers have completed the signing of Argentina hooker Julian Montoya earlier than planned, BBC Radio Leicester understands.

Montoya was set to join Tigers ahead of the 2021-22 Premiership campaign, but has joined Leicester ahead of schedule.

It is understood visa issues prevented his family from joining up with Montoya who had agreed a short-term deal at Australian side Western Force.

But Montoya, capped 63 times, has now left and arrived in the UK.

Tigers announced the signing of Montoya in June with the expectation he would arrive later in the year, but it is understood he has already joined up with his team-mates at Welford Road.

Montoya started for the Pumas at the 2019 Rugby World Cup and is part of a mass exodus from Argentine rugby in the wake of economic problems stemming from the Covid-19 pandemic.Of 43 players contracted by the Jaguares for their 2019 Super Rugby season - where they lost in the final to New Zealand side Crusaders - only 11 are now based in Argentina, with the rest having taken deals abroad.

Montoya will join fellow Pumas Tomas Lavanini and Joaquin Diaz Bonilla at Welford Road.

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