There has been plenty of excitement leading into this weekend’s leg of the Tri-Nations 2020 clash between New Zealand and Argentina.
The Rugby World awaits to see the Pumas return to international rugby, while New Zealand is looking to bounce back following a shock defeat they experienced last week against Dave Rennie’s, Wallabies.
As the vulnerability of The All Blacks was exposed, Mario Ledesma’s, Pumas, will seek their first-ever victory over New Zealand this weekend.
Will we witness history being made in Argentinian rugby this weekend?
Tri-Nations 2020 Team News:
New Zealand Coach Ian Foster has omitted 10 players from last week’s fixtures, while the big names, such as Richie Mo’unga, returns to fly-half, with his trusted scrum-half partner, Aaron Smith, as the two main starters.
Notable omissions from their loss against the Wallabies include Sevu Reece, Ngani Laumape, TJ Perenara, Scott Barrett and Karl Tu’inukuafe, along with prop, Ofa Tu’ungafasi, who will serve his ban following last weekend’s red card.
Three-time World Champions, New Zealand are making a bold statement this weekend with plenty of experience returning to the side, as they look to recover their Tri-Nations 2020 campaign this coming Saturday at Bankwest Stadium in Sydney.
The pride of South American rugby are looking to put their long-awaited return to rugby behind them as kick-off draws closer for The Pumas first fixture since their Rugby World Cup 2019 campaign.
Asides from the challenging circumstances – where certain players and coaching staff contracted the Covid-19 virus – The Pumas have now served their two weeks of quarantine, along with two warm-up games played against The Australian ‘A’ side, of which they both won.
With a host of players in The Pumas side applying their rugby trade in Europe, a full-strength side was named by Coach Ledesma for this weekend’s Tri-Nations encounter. Mario Ledesma has his captain, Pablo Matera, back to full fitness, along with Argentine highest point scorer, Nicolas Sanchez, at flyhalf for this weekend.
In what may seem like a pretty large mountain to climb for The Pumas, a victory for them will give The All Blacks their first consecutive test defeat since 2011.
Over a year ago in the 4 Nations Rugby Championship, Argentina came extremely close to making history in the nation’s capital of Buenos Aires.
With less than 5 points separating the sides in front of a passionate home crowd, New Zealand managed to break the hearts of The Pumas as they held onto a hard-fought 20-16 victory.
In what was arguably not the best day for the three-time world champions, New Zealand did look comfortable going into halftime leading 20-6. Argentina displayed solid defence and managed to score a converted try to draw closer to the scoreboard.
In one of the final set-piece phases of the game, Argentina had the perfect attacking throw-in, on their opponents 5-meter line.
However, New Zealand’s solid forward pack withheld great composure to assure The Pumas could not go over their try line, let alone make their attacking ball available. This resulted in a scrum to The All Blacks and the match shortly after.
Does Argentina have what it takes to gain their first victory over New Zealand this weekend?
Tri-Nations 2020 Team Line-Ups:
15 Beauden Barrett, 14 Jordie Barrett, 13 Anton Lienert-Brown, 12 Jack Goodhue, 11 Caleb Clarke, 10 Richie Mo’unga, 9 Aaron Smith, 1 Joe Moody, 2 Dane Coles, 3 Tyrel Lomax, 4 Patrick Tuipulotu, 5 Sam Whitelock, 6 Shannon Frizell, 7 Sam Cane (c), 8 Ardie Savea.
Replacements: 16 Codie Taylor, 17 Alex Hodgman, 18 Nepo Laulala, 19 Tupou Vaa’i, 20 Hoskins Sotutu, 21 Brad Weber, 22 Rieko Ioane, 23 Damian McKenzie
15 Santiago Carreras, 14 Bautista Delguy, 13 Matías Orlando, 12 Santiago Chocobares, 11 Juan Imhoff, 10 Nicolás Sánchez, 9 Tomás Cubelli, 1 Nahuel Tetaz Chaparro, 2 Julián Montoya, 3 Francisco Gómez Kodela, 4 Guido Petti, 5 Matías Alemanno, 6 Pablo Matera (c), 7 Marcos Kremer, 8 Rodrigo Bruni
Replacements: 16 Facundo Bosch, 17 Mayco Vivas, 18 Santiago Medrano, 19 Santiago Grondona, 20 Tomás Lezana, 21 Gonzalo Bertranou, 22 Lucio Cinti, 23 Santiago Cordero
As the third round of the Tri-Nations 2020 approaches this weekend, the rugby world is excited to see how Argentina will compare against a wounded All Blacks side. Both teams are fairly familiar with each other since 2012 and Argentina are hungry to record their maiden test victory against Ian Foster’s New Zealand side.
It has been 9 years since New Zealand has suffered back-to-back test defeats, which creates the momentum that the All Blacks will be a different side this coming weekend.
Along with the major changes New Zealand have named for this encounter, I cannot see Argentina being victorious this weekend. I will go on to predict a New Zealand victory by 10 points for this third round Tri-Nations 2020 test!
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