Horstmann deal delights Baxter
By Mark Stevens
Exeter Chiefs head coach Rob Baxter has spoken of his delight after it was confirmed today that Kai Horstmann had agreed a new one-year deal with the Aviva Premiership club.
Signed during the summer of 2012 from Worcester Warriors, the experienced forward has since gone on to make 66 appearances to date for the Chiefs, scoring the latest of his four tries in last Sunday’s league win over visiting Bath Rugby.
A key cog in the Exeter wheel ever since his arrival, Baxter believes there is still plenty more that the 34-year-old can offer to his squad, both on and off the field at Sandy Park.
“Kai is a very good player and a very good person to have around the squad,” said Baxter (pictured). “He is one of those guys who is very easy to keep around - you don’t have to think too much about him.
“He is good guy when we need him and he has played some very good rugby for us. A very good example of that was on Sunday, when he scored a very good try which really took some doing. He had to win the ball on the floor and get over the line.”
Although Horstmann’s first team involvement was somewhat limited at the start of the current campaign, he has demonstrated in recent weeks his value to the cause with some notable displays.
“Kai has played a really good role for us this season, whether it’s starting or coming off the bench,” added Baxter. “We really like what he does off the field - he trains very hard and is really diligent, plus he’s a good, experienced player who conducts himself well.
“Those are important qualities and from our perspective we are delighted to have him for another year, although we are expecting him to work extremely hard to be a very competitive member of a competitive back-five.”
Explaining why he felt Horstmann, who has also previously played for Harlequins in the top flight, was rewarded with a new contract, Baxter continued: “First and foremost it has to come down to playing form and Kai has maintained that and his training form.
“As long as a player is doing that then those are good signs for us. Kai is training as hard as ever and he looks as durable and fit as ever. He has the quality and experience of being in and around professional rugby for a long time and he drives a lot of very good qualities into the squad.”