Australia v Argentina in Gold Coast (Rugby Championship)
Venue: Cbus Super Stadium, Gold Coast
Referee: Glen Jackson (New Zealand)
Australia created an upset in this competition last week with a last minute, thrilling win over South Africa. That result leaves New Zealand way out in front and unlikely to be trumped in this competition. Australia would do well to secure second place and overtake South Africa as the number two team in this competition. They need to secure a win against Argentina today for that to be a realistic goal.
Argentina, however, will be looking for their first win in this competition since it began in 2012. Despite Australia’s win last weekend Argentina will fancy themselves in with more than just a chance. Against the All Blacks last weekend Argentina were at times able to rattle their opponents scrum and in the loose were a handful. With Australia’s supposed weak scrum (it wasn’t against South Africa) Argentina will see this as an opportunity they must not waste.
Argentina will be looking for their first Rugby Championship victory on the Gold Coast. Image thanks to www.espnscrum.com
Australia will not want to see all their hard work last work ( and their coach made it clear in no uncertain terms after the game that Australia did make it look harder than it should have been) go to waste. A good win here is crucial for Australia to secure that second placing. Australia will also look across the Tasman to see if South Africa can cause an upset against New Zealand and throw this competition wide open.
Australia simply has to counter what will be a massive Argentine assault up front. Weather that and play to their strength out wide and at the back and Australia should win. Go down to the Argentine scrum and the game will be there for Argentina to take their first championship scalp. I can’t wait!
Last Five Encounters
05.10.2013 Australia 54-17 in Rosario (Rugby Championship)
14.09.2013 Australia 14-13 in Perth (Rugby Championship)
06.10.2012 Australia 26-19 in Rosario (Rugby Championship)
15.09.2012 Australia 23-19 in Gold Coast (Rugby Championship)
02.11.2002 Australia 17-6 in Buenos Aires
Australia Last Five P 5, W 3, D 1, L 1
06.09.2014 v South Africa W 24-23 in Perth (Rugby Champ.,Mandela Cup)23.08.2014 v New Zealand L 20-51 in Sydney (Rugby Champ., Bledisloe Cup)16.08.2014 v New Zealand D 12-12 in Sydney (Bledisloe Cup; Rugby Champ.)
21.06.2014 v France W 39-13 in Sydney
14.06.2014 v France W 6-0 in Melbourne
Argentina Last Five P 5, L 5
06.09.2014 v New Zealand L 9-28 in Napier (Rugby Championship)
23.08.2014 v South Africa L 31-33 in Salta (Rugby Championship)
16.08.2014 v South Africa L 6-13 in Pretoria (Rugby Championship)
21.06.2014 v Scotland L 19-21 in Cordoba
14.06.2014 v Ireland L 17-23 in Tucuman
GWC Rugby Rankings
World Table: Australia 2nd, Argentina 14th
IRB Ranking Points
Australia 88.10, Argentina 73.98
Prediction: In the short history of games played between these two nations in this competition Australia has struggled against Argentina at home. I expect the same to happen but Australia take this one narrowly.
Australia by 2 points
15 Israel Folau, 14 Peter Betham, 13 Tevita Kuridrani, 12 Matthew Toomua,
11 Robert Horne, 10 Bernard Foley, 9 Nicholas Phipps, 8 Benjamin McCalman, 7 Michael Hooper (Capt.), 6 Scott Fardy, 5 Robert Simmons, 4 Samuel Carter, 3 Sekope Kepu, 2 Tatafu Polota-Nau, 1 James Slipper.
16 James Hanson, 17 Pek Cowan, 18 Ben Alexander, 19 James Horwill,
20 Scott Higginbotham, 21 Matthew Hodgson, 22 Nicholas White, 23 Kurtley Beale.
Head Coach: Ewan MacKenzie
15 Joaquín Tuculet, 14 Juan Imhoff, 13 Marcelo Bosch, 12 Juan Martín Hernández, 11 Manuel Montero, 10 Nicolás Sánchez, 9 Martín Landajo,
8 Leonardo Senatore, 7 Juan Martín Fernández Lobbe, 6 Juan Manuel Leguizamón, 5 Matías Alemanno, 4 Mariano Galarza, 3 Ramiro Herrera,
2 Agustín Creevy (Capt.)1 Marcos Ayerza.
16 Matías Cortese, 17 Bruno Postiglioni, 18 Nahuel Tetaz Chaparro,
19 Benjamin Macome, 20 Rodrigo Báez, 21 Tomás Cubelli, 22 Jerónimo De la Fuente, 23 Lucas González Amorosino.
Head Coach: Daniel Hourcade