Wallabies Man Up In Argentina

The Wallabies have produced a gutsy performance to defeat Argentina 25-19 in Rosario to finish second in the inaugural Rugby Championship. Overcoming a fiesty home team, a horendouse injury toll, and sharks fans with laser beams attached to their heads, the Wallabies’ backs-against-the-wall performance provided a rare moment of pleasure in a fortnight where Australian Rugby suffered through the Quade Cooper saga and a demoralising loss in South Africa Last week.

For the casual observer, the match was pretty poor advertisement for the game of rugby. There were penalties galore and plenty of dropped ball but for fans of the Wallabies , it was an inspiring victory. Injuries aside, last week in South Africa the Wallabies were dominated phsically with the Springboks imposing themselves at the breakdown. Against an extremely physical Pumas outfit, it was feared that a similar submission by the Wallabies would gift the Argentineans their first championship victory and further shame the beleaguered Australian team but the Wallabies turned up ready to rip in. The big mobile pack led by Nathan Sharp stamped there authority at the breakdown and gave the backline plenty of opportunities.

Argentina has always been regarded a notoriously shitty place to play. Not only did players have to combat a passionate Pumas outfit that seem to lift an extra 10% on home soil, but they also had to contend with a wild crowd. Despite slotting 6 penalties and a conversion, kickers Mike Harris and Kurtley Beale were clearly put off by lasers flashed at their faces and on the ball as they lined up their kicks. It was only once a precision set piece from a mid field scrum, orchestrated by Beale to put Digby Ioane over the line for the first try of the match, did the Wallabies look comfortable. The Wallabies withstood a late Argentinian fightback to produce a tough win that should ensure Robbie Deans holds onto his job for the next few weeks and provide some much needed confidence in the lead up to the final Bledisloe match against the All Blacks in Brisbane in two weeks time.