Hail the Chiefs
Gonzalo Camacho tells Sky Sports Exeter can build on a remarkable season
By Tony Curtis - Follow me on Twitter: @SkysportsTC
Last Updated: 10/05/12 8:45am
Gonzalo Camacho insists Exeter are determined to make up for their play-off heartbreak by going one better next season.
The Argentina winger, who was collected the Gatorade Game Changer of the season crown at the Aviva Premiership Rugby Awards, has been in sensational form this season - playing a key role as the Chiefs finished fifth.
In fact Exeter, the surprise package of the season, were only denied a place in the play-offs in the final week.
And there were plenty of reasons for Rob Baxter' men to be pleased - especially as they only gained promotion to the top-flight for the first time in 2010.
Having finished eighth and then fifth during their fledgling Premiership career, the Chiefs are a club on the up - and Camacho insists the club are not done yet with their rise up the rankings.
"It has been a great season," he told Sky Sports.
"This is because of the great start we had and we have built on that. We have also got a great set of guys that just want to keep on learning and improving - and that brings with it enjoyment.
"We have just gone out to enjoy every match and to do the best that we can - and that is the way we like to play. We will now try to keep that up next season and you never know what could happen.
"It is going to be harder. When you are seen as the underdog it is easy to find the motivation. But our motivation is to now do better and that will push us. Also teams will now likely say 'oh watch out, it is Exeter' and that is what we want. We want teams to respect us as we respect them."
Camacho believes that Exeter's patient approach to success has been key - with chief executive Tony Rowe deserving praise for his work in ensuring that everything is in place for the club.
"I think it is a project that is slowly building up," Camacho said. "It is not one where you say we are going to be fighting relegation this season and then next season pushing for the top spot in the Premiership.
"Tony Rowe has built his foundations from the stadium to the squad to coaching staff and he has been building it all up from there.
"If success comes sooner it is better. You never know when it can come but slowly it is coming.
"This year we have made a great jump from eighth to fifth, we have had some amazing results and we have also improved in all the statistics from last season.
"So we have to keep on working hard and trying our best. I think we can do very well next season but everyone is building up towards next season with new signings and new staff as well as trying to improve their skills and improve their rugby.
"The Premiership is the hardest tournament in the world where all the teams can beat each other. There is no easy game but all you can do is your best."
As well as looking to build on their domestic form, Exeter will find themselves competing in the Heineken Cup for the first time.
And Camacho can't wait to line up against Europe's elite.
"The Heineken Cup will be amazing," he added. "We will be playing against the best of France, Ireland, Wales, Scotland and England.
"At Harlequins I had the chance to play against Munster and it was a fabulous experience at their ground. It is massive what we have achieved this year so it is great for us to get this opportunity."
Gonzalo Camacho was talking to skysports.com at the presentation of the Gatorade Game Changer of the Season award. Gatorade is an official performance partner of Premiership Rugby.