Argentina vs Wallabies Rugby Championship preview and prediction

Charlie Lawry Roar Guru

By Charlie Lawry, Charlie Lawry is a Roar Guru

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77 Have your say

    For the first time in his three-year tenure, Michael Cheika has named an unchanged lineup as the Wallabies prepare for their showdown with the Pumas in Mendoza.

    There’s plenty at stake, as the Wallabies look to leapfrog the Springboks to finish second in the Rugby Championship. Meanwhile, Argentina will be desperate to earn their first points of the tournament.

    Last week, Argentina went down 10-36 to the All Blacks at home, while 80 minutes wasn’t enough to separate the Wallabies and Springboks for the second time in as many games.

    Despite retaining his starting 15, Cheika couldn’t resist a few bench changes. Tetera Faulkner and Henry Speight come in for Ned Hanigan and Tom Robertson, restoring the usual 5-3 split of forwards to backs.

    For the Pumas, coach Daniel Hourcade has made four changes. In the second row, Marcos Kremer and Matias Alemanno take over from Guido Petti and Tomas Lavanini.

    On the side of the scrum, Javier Ortega gets the nod at 7 in place of Juan Manuel Leguizamon. Meanwhile, Tomas Cubelli is injured so Martin Landajo starts at halfback.

    1. Lucas Noguera Paz 2. Agustin Creevy (c) 3. Nahuel Tetaz Chaparro 4. Marcos Kremer 5. Matias Alemanno 6. Pablo Matera 7. Javier Ortega Desio 8. Tomas Lezana 9. Martin Landajo 10. Nicolas Sanchez 11. Emiliano Boffelli 12. Jeronimo de la Fuente 13. Matias Orlando 14. Matias Moroni 15. Joaquin Tuculet

    Subs: 16. Julian Montoya 17. Santiago Garcia Botta 18. Enrique Pieretto 19. Banjamin Macome 20. Leonardo Senatore 21. Gonzalo Bertranou 22. Santiago Gonzalez Iglesias 23. Santiago Cordero

    1. Scott Sio 2. Tatafu Polota-Nau 3. Sekope Kepu 4. Izack Rodda 5. Adam Coleman 6. Jack Dempsey 7. Michael Hooper (c) 8. Sean McMahon 9. Will Genia 10. Bernard Foley 11. Reece Hodge 12. Kurtley Beale 13. Tevita Kuridrani 14. Marika Koroibete 15. Israel Folau

    Subs: 16. Stephen Moore 17. Tetera Faulkner 18. Allan Alaalatoa 19. Rob Simmons 20. Lukhan Tui 21. Nick Phipps 22. Samu Kerevi 23. Henry Speight

    Israel Folau Australia Rugby Union Wallabies 2017

    (Photo by Scott Barbour/Getty Images)

    Despite vast improvement over the past decade, the Pumas struggle in this fixture. The Wallabies have won 14 of the last 15 encounters, although that solitary loss did come at Mendoza’s Estadio Malvinas Argentinas ‒ this week’s venue ‒ back in 2014.

    If the Wallabies have been guilty of not putting together a sustained 80-minute performance this season, the Pumas are even worse offenders.

    They have the set piece nous and aggression to make it a tussle, but currently lack the killer instinct to get the results.

    That said, being the last match of the Rugby Championship ‒ and a home one at that ‒ you suspect Argentina will employ the kitchen sink approach. So Wallabies beware.

    The opening 40 minutes against the All Blacks in Sydney aside, the Wallabies have looked much better in recent weeks.

    Bernard Foley’s goalkicking has been reliable, the backline cohesive, and the set piece… well, it’s just about hanging in there. I’m still backing an Aussie win.

    Wallabies to win by 10.

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    The Crowd Says (77)

    • Roar Guru

      October 7th 2017 @ 4:18am
      Carlos the Argie said | October 7th 2017 @ 4:18am | ! Report

      There has not been a vast improvement in the Pumas over the last decade Indeed, in RWC-07 the Pumas finished third by beating France. The record of both coaches after Loffreda left has been abismal. Both Phelan and Hourcade have had very sorry results against them.

      The present ranking of Argentina is probably the worst one in the last ten years.

      The Pumas do not have a set piece nous. Sorry, but their scrum performance is abysmal too. They are using the same props that were so awful against the ABs. The line-out has done a bit better. Their defense has been appalling. The tackle rate is very low. Their discipline has been horrendous but, fortunately, YC magnet Lavanini is not playing this weekend.

      • Roar Guru

        October 7th 2017 @ 7:46am
        Machooka said | October 7th 2017 @ 7:46am | ! Report

        Carlos… you’re basically saying the Pumas have been crap! 😉

        • Roar Guru

          October 7th 2017 @ 8:19am
          Carlos the Argie said | October 7th 2017 @ 8:19am | ! Report

          Your ability to summarize texts is incomparable and accurate!


          • October 7th 2017 @ 8:46am
            Fionn said | October 7th 2017 @ 8:46am | ! Report

            So are the Wallabies, my friend, so I would say Argentina have a good chance at beating us in Mendoza ?

            • Roar Guru

              October 7th 2017 @ 8:51am
              Carlos the Argie said | October 7th 2017 @ 8:51am | ! Report


              You will be there! Wonderful, are you taking “Fiona” to the game?

              If you can find out about a winery Matervini, let me know what you think….

              • October 7th 2017 @ 9:00am
                Fionn said | October 7th 2017 @ 9:00am | ! Report

                No, no, not going to be there unfortunately (although being there rather than Canberra sounds a wonderful proposition…). I just predict a close match from two teams that have really struggled to play well since the RWC.

                I want to try and get to Argentina in about March/April as I want to go to southern Patagaonia, but I’m not sure if I am going to be able to make it….

                I was out in Melbourne yesterday, it was loud of course and everyone whom I met and was told my name did a double take, asked me to repeat it and then asked tentatively ‘…Fiona…?’

              • Roar Guru

                October 7th 2017 @ 9:06am
                Carlos the Argie said | October 7th 2017 @ 9:06am | ! Report

                I realized it is SHOP who lives in Mendoza, not you (and Fiona).

                I also want to go to Patagonia with the missus one time. In our “bucket list”, but we are first trying to accomplish the physically demanding activities. We may do Sea to sea through the Pyrenees on bike next year.

              • October 7th 2017 @ 9:13am
                Fionn said | October 7th 2017 @ 9:13am | ! Report

                I wouldn’t mind living in Mendoza actually… Based on my penchant for Argentine Malbec 🙂

                See, that sounds extremely good too! I’ve made a pledge to do more things in Australia, and so my next three here are:

                (1) going to the Top End (Kakadu National Park, Litchfield, Katherine Gorge)
                (2) hiking the larapinta trek in Northern Territory
                (3) driving through the Kimberley

                The top overseas ones, at present, are climbing Mt Kilimanjaro, seeing the mountain gorillas and going to Patagonia.

              • October 7th 2017 @ 9:19am
                Fionn said | October 7th 2017 @ 9:19am | ! Report

                Oh, and seeing the Great Migration in the Serengeti or Masai Mara…

              • Roar Guru

                October 7th 2017 @ 9:23am
                Carlos the Argie said | October 7th 2017 @ 9:23am | ! Report

                Fionn, we should talk. You list is very inspiring!

              • October 7th 2017 @ 9:31am
                Fionn said | October 7th 2017 @ 9:31am | ! Report

                Indeed, my friend, and thank you 🙂 . When I’m back in the house (currently on a tram) I shall contact the Roar stuff and see if they would perhaps be willing to pass my email onto you.

              • October 7th 2017 @ 7:50pm
                FunBus said | October 7th 2017 @ 7:50pm | ! Report

                While my predictive abilities have been less than stellar of late (Boks by 15 last week etc), I think the WBs win this comfortably.
                The Pumas have been consistently poor for a long time now, and they’ve escaped the level of criticism they probably deserve. Playing in Argentina is now not much of a challenge. That’s a shame for the global game.
                Anyway, I’ve done my bit to condemn you Aussies to certain defeat, now.

              • October 7th 2017 @ 1:47pm
                Connor33 said | October 7th 2017 @ 1:47pm | ! Report

                Fionn…where’s the optimist in you. Australia by 30 points, with several set moves — including one with a sick forward pass. 😉

          • October 7th 2017 @ 2:27pm
            ThugbyFan said | October 7th 2017 @ 2:27pm | ! Report

            The Chook says on one word what we mere mortals take 3-4 paragraphs to say. “They were CR^P” or “They were BEAUT” sums it all up.

            I hear he is working on short slogans to win the WB coaching gig, his fav being MAGA “Make Australia Great Again” and MAWWM “Make Awesome Wallabies With Machooka”. 🙂

            • October 7th 2017 @ 10:18pm
              Rugby Tragic said | October 7th 2017 @ 10:18pm | ! Report

              Hahaha! … I didn’t know chooks and wallabies got on together …

      • October 7th 2017 @ 7:53am
        TheSnake said | October 7th 2017 @ 7:53am | ! Report

        All Blacks by 15 points

        • October 7th 2017 @ 10:37am
          Dsat24 said | October 7th 2017 @ 10:37am | ! Report

          How’s the second half looking?!?

    • October 7th 2017 @ 4:47am
      Mike said | October 7th 2017 @ 4:47am | ! Report

      Good luck Carlos. Sounds like you’ll need it. But so will we with Cheikas dubious selection policies

    • Roar Guru

      October 7th 2017 @ 5:29am
      Harry Jones said | October 7th 2017 @ 5:29am | ! Report

      I think there will be another draw. If there are two more draws for Cheika’s team, I expect he will become obsessed with a golden point.

      • October 7th 2017 @ 7:48am
        Redsfan1 said | October 7th 2017 @ 7:48am | ! Report

        I suspect the Springboks are in for another 57-0 hiding. The coach will then win a series against France next year and South Africans fans will declare the Boks are ‘Back’.

        • Roar Guru

          October 7th 2017 @ 9:47pm
          Harry Jones said | October 7th 2017 @ 9:47pm | ! Report

          Coetzee, having survived 2016 and 0-57, is probably a rugby zombie who cannot be ousted. Must have pictures of ANC plus Donkey.

      • Roar Guru

        October 7th 2017 @ 8:22am
        Carlos the Argie said | October 7th 2017 @ 8:22am | ! Report

        They are suggesting paper, scissors or rock….

        • October 7th 2017 @ 10:51am
          Bob Wire said | October 7th 2017 @ 10:51am | ! Report

          Carlos, Patagonia is spectacular, we managed to see a rugby game in Ushuaia, it appeared to be a practise match with maximum input from everyone involved, most entertaining!
          I imagine it is one of the most southern locations in the world to see a rugby game?
          Tried to play golf on the southern most course, but it was waterlogged, maybe next time.

      • October 7th 2017 @ 12:20pm
        Dave_S said | October 7th 2017 @ 12:20pm | ! Report

        🙂 🙂

        I think you’re a mischief-maker, Mr Jones!

    • October 7th 2017 @ 5:39am
      Mike said | October 7th 2017 @ 5:39am | ! Report

      Cheika is pleased as punch with a draw – improves his coaching stats considerably

    • October 7th 2017 @ 7:40am
      Galatzo said | October 7th 2017 @ 7:40am | ! Report

      Carlos – Lavanini’s two yellows and a red makes him more suitable for snooker than rugby. I wish you good luck but the Puma’s poor performances is strengthening the argument for those who want to do away with the RC.

      • October 7th 2017 @ 7:59am
        Taylorman said | October 7th 2017 @ 7:59am | ! Report

        Hey hey, dont bring him into snooker! Tis a gentlemans game…?

        • Roar Guru

          October 7th 2017 @ 8:21am
          Carlos the Argie said | October 7th 2017 @ 8:21am | ! Report

          Snooker, cricket, darts. I don’t know anything about those games!

          And by the way, I also don’t know anything about soccer…

          Rugby and now cycling are my games

          By the way, and for those of Irish heritage on the Roar, the rugby pitch at Trinity College in Dublin is now my favorite pitch of all time. Pitch, not stadium. Gorgeous! They say it was first described in the Book of Kells…

          • Roar Guru

            October 7th 2017 @ 8:43am
            Harry Jones said | October 7th 2017 @ 8:43am | ! Report

            Did you go look at the Book of Kells? Amazing !!!

            • Roar Guru

              October 7th 2017 @ 8:54am
              Carlos the Argie said | October 7th 2017 @ 8:54am | ! Report

              I did! There were hundreds of retirees looking at the book(s). The library is magnificent too. I preferred to look at the students wondering about than the retirees….

              And I managed to spend three days in Dublin, though 2.5 were stuck at the meeting hotel, without having one single Guinness. My step dad in heaven is not happy about it.

            • Roar Guru

              October 7th 2017 @ 9:10am
              Carlos the Argie said | October 7th 2017 @ 9:10am | ! Report

              And before I forget, the meeting I went to included some rheumatologists. One of them was a big kahuna from Dublin so I told him about James Lowe and his JRA and asked him if he would be treated at his hospital. He had no idea about the situation, but as he was a former rugby player himself and rugby fanatic he was very interested in contacting Leinster to find out more….

          • October 7th 2017 @ 9:00am
            Taylorman said | October 7th 2017 @ 9:00am | ! Report

            Have a look at this…sporting perfection?, watch as the tension to achieving the maximum of 15 reds with 15 blacks and the colours builds…


            • Roar Guru

              October 7th 2017 @ 9:22am
              Machooka said | October 7th 2017 @ 9:22am | ! Report

              Thanks for that TM… unbelievable speed of attack.

              I’m thinking that would be the fastest ever break of 147!?! 🙂

              • October 7th 2017 @ 9:46am
                Taylorman said | October 7th 2017 @ 9:46am | ! Report

                Yep, 97 worlds and hes still doing them. 147k pounds he got for that five minutes twenty…not a bad days work?

              • October 7th 2017 @ 12:28pm
                Dave_S said | October 7th 2017 @ 12:28pm | ! Report

                And his hair was perfect ?

            • Roar Guru

              October 7th 2017 @ 10:28am
              The Neutral View From Sweden said | October 7th 2017 @ 10:28am | ! Report

              That is one my favorite clips on YT.
              I am pretty sure we will never see anyone improve that record, not even The Rocket himself can better that.

              • October 7th 2017 @ 10:54am
                Taylorman said | October 7th 2017 @ 10:54am | ! Report

                Its the quickest professional 147 in a tournament. There have been quicker ones and in club games or practice even quicker.

                There are also higher breaks…when the opponent foul snookers before a reds potted, creating the extra red, a 155 is possible, but extremely rare.

                Ronnies a bit of a freak in the sport. Makes it look so much easier and can play nearly as well left handed, the one everyone wants to watch.

                Even the pros say they dont stick around and watch other players but they all watch Ronnie, even though they get him often enough.

                The Chinese players are really coming on strong and in ten to twenty years will probably dominate the sport. Its growing big time in China.

              • Roar Guru

                October 7th 2017 @ 11:08am
                The Neutral View From Sweden said | October 7th 2017 @ 11:08am | ! Report

                Even if it was on training I love to see anyone go quicker than that. There can’t be many seconds one can shave from that 5.20. The Rocket is repeatedly ready for the next shot before the ref even replace the ball on the table.

                I love watching the Rocket. He is one of these once in century talents. An absolute legend. When he is in the zone, he can’t be beaten.

                And yup, snooker will be dominated by the Chinese soon.
                Thailand is actually pretty good at snooker. Lots of snooker halls around here.

                Have not a Kiwi been World Champ in snooker back in the day?

              • October 7th 2017 @ 11:29am
                Taylorman said | October 7th 2017 @ 11:29am | ! Report

                If you break that break down theres a few times where he double checks the shot but like I said in practice you get blokes all trying to make a faster one…this one the guys replacing his own balls, as most snooker players do in practice… and hes not mucking around…


                Dene Okane is our best modernish player, up to 10 I think in the 80’s. Oz have Robertson who won the worlds in 2010.

                I play a mate in Wellington who has seven 147’s and has made well over 3000 100 plus breaks in his 63 odd years, best player Ive ever seen. He got a 146 and 147 within a week this year…at 63!.

                He got seven 100s on me in a twelve hour session. His sons made seven as well. Lives in Brissy.

                Ive had a few centuries but nothing like those two. Legends around here.

              • Roar Guru

                October 7th 2017 @ 11:44am
                The Neutral View From Sweden said | October 7th 2017 @ 11:44am | ! Report

                Thanks for the clip T-man. Pretty damn impressive stuff.

                And mate my compliments to you. Sounds like you can play snooker. How wonderful for you, because it is a beautiful game.
                I know my way around the pool table a bit (or I used to be okayish, but then one don’t play often one loses both feel and game pretty fast), but snooker is so much harder. The first couple of times I played snooker I had so many foul balls I ended up on minus points all the time.

                And your mate sounds outlandish. Surely he must have competed at a semi-pro level at least? Those kind of stats are almost impossible to get without long practice hours and some steel to handle pressure shots.

              • October 7th 2017 @ 12:01pm
                Taylorman said | October 7th 2017 @ 12:01pm | ! Report

                Harry Haenga and his son Daniel dominated most of the scene here for a while bit weve a few good players, some now out from England. Both have played around the world but didnt make the pro scene, mainly through lack of support. Pre 2000 you had to base in the UK and win, when there are so many talented players there. A tough school.

                Those are practice game breaks but hes often the highest break of most tournaments he enters. Harrys our Ronnie, makes it look so much easier than everyone else.

                I played after too many rugby injuries and was in NZ pool teams in the 90’s and got to see the world a bit through that and so had a bit of a mispent youth as pool players do, pubs and a lot of money games on paydays, those were the days!

                Still play a bit and its good that experience matters, seen many promising cueists go to pieces in tournaments, we all do at some point. Us oldies need that now…cunning and choosing the right shots helps, you cant clear every visit, even though we always like to try to.

                Anyway, back to the rugby…?

              • Roar Guru

                October 7th 2017 @ 1:43pm
                The Neutral View From Sweden said | October 7th 2017 @ 1:43pm | ! Report

                Thanks for sharing T-man.

                My pool skills – even at my best – are nowhere near yours.

            • October 7th 2017 @ 6:33pm
              DavSA said | October 7th 2017 @ 6:33pm | ! Report

              Keep bringing them T-Man !

            • October 7th 2017 @ 8:03pm
              FunBus said | October 7th 2017 @ 8:03pm | ! Report

              Ronnie’s one of those once every 50-100 years geniuses that most sports can name. They can simply do things at their best that no-one else can.

              • October 7th 2017 @ 8:52pm
                Taylorman said | October 7th 2017 @ 8:52pm | ! Report

                Yep, agree with that. For me the closest to perfection in a sport that Ive seen. Did you see that last red in the Welsh open 147? One of the best shots Ive ever seen.

                Last red, up the table on the cush green side and left handed pots and hauls the white back perfectly to the black. After 28 righted pots he plays a left handed shot so delicate…unbelievable.

    • October 7th 2017 @ 9:35am
      Same team? said | October 7th 2017 @ 9:35am | ! Report

      I’ve read a few times it is an unchanged team, yet I remember Hanigan ran on in jersey 20. He isn’t named this week (which is an absolute blessing!)

      So, it is actually a changed team.

      • Roar Guru

        October 7th 2017 @ 10:55am
        PeterK said | October 7th 2017 @ 10:55am | ! Report

        unchanged starting team

        he went for a 5:3 bench including speight and dropping hanigan

        Also dropped Robertson and included Faulkner.

        2 very positive changes

        • October 7th 2017 @ 1:52pm
          Connor33 said | October 7th 2017 @ 1:52pm | ! Report


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