Thursday, October 28, 2010

Argentina Squad named for November Internationals


Los Pumas Head Coach, Santiago Phelan, has confirmed a squad of 31 players for Argentina´s European tour in november which will include international matches against Italy, France and Ireland. The tour was scheduled to include four matches with Argentina taking on the French Barbarians on November 6th in Paris but the match has been cancelled. Instead the match vs Italy in Verona on Saturday November 13 will be the first match and will be refereed by New Zealander Chris Pollock. Argentina last played vs Italy in November 2008 in Torino and won the match 22-14 with Juan Martin Hernandez setting up a superb try for Rafael Carballo.

After taking on the Italians, Los Pumas will then travel to Montpellier, France to face Les Bleus in the lattest contest to continue their rivalry which has seen Argentina win 7 of the 9 tests over the past 10 years. During which time Argentina has won by impressive margins including 28, 24 and 10 points but France´s two victories have been by 6 points in 2008 and 1 point in 2006. The 28 point win occured in June of this year with Argentina winning bu a recrod breaking scoreline of 41-13. November's match will be a first with the beautiful city of Montpellier hosting a high profile match and Jonathan Kaplan of South Africa will referee the contest.

The final match will be played at the brand new Aviva Stadium in Dublin, Ireland one week latter with another South African, Mark Lawrence being in charge of the match. It is a great chance for both sides to shine and this time should see Argentina at close to full strength after last taking on Ireland in 2008 without first choice players in 6 of the 7 back positions. On that day Ireland won 17-3 with a try non fulltime which was there only try of the match.

The selection of 31 players is one more than the number allocated to each country participating at a Rugby World Cup. Interestingly, Phelan has only selected two hookers but has selected five secondrowers but only four backrowers and Gonzalo Tiesi is the only specialist 13 selected. The team contains 28 professional players all based in Europe and three players from Argentina´s Pladar system. Of the 28, 21 play in France with three playing for Montpellier.

A number of players are returning to the team following injuries. Most notably, the hero from France 2007, Juan Martín Hernández who is returning for this first time since June 2009. Other places back in the team include Marcelo Bosch, Gonzalo Oscar Camacho, Alvaro Galindo and Alfredo Lalanne. There is also room for two uncapped players in winger, Martín Bustos Moyano and backrower Miguel de Achaval who both look set to get game time.

Players unavaliable due to injury include Miguel Avramovic and Alejandro Campos (both Agen). Whilst Juan Manuel Leguizamón is unavaliable due to suspension. The loss of Campos and Leguizamon will mean Argentina are missing two first choice backrowers for the tour but it will give others such as Fessia, Galindo and de Achaval the opportunity to impress ahead of New Zealand 2011.

Felipe Contepomi will captain Los Pumas.

Suggested XV:
15 Martín Rodriguez Gurruchaga, 14 Gonzalo Camacho, 13 Gonzalo Tiesi, 12 Felipe Contepomi, 11 Lucas Gonzalez Amorosino, 10 Juan Martín Hernández, 9 Nicolas Vergallo, 8 Juan Martín Fernández Lobbe, 7 Alfredo Galindo, 6 Genaro Fessia, 5 Patricio Albacete, 4 Mauel Carizza, 3 Martín Scelzo, 2 Mario Ledesma, 1 Marcos Ayerza

Complete Pumas Squad
Horacio Agulla (Leicester Tigers, England)
Patricio Albacete (Toulouse, France)
Marcos Iván Ayerza (Leicester Tigers, England)
Lucas Borges (Albi, France)
Marcelo Bosch (Biarritz, France)
Martín Bustos Moyano (Montpellier, France)
Gonzalo Camacho (Harlequins, England)
Rafael Carballo (Bordeaux Begles, France)
Manuel Carizza (Biarritz, France)
Felipe Contepomi (Toulon, France)
Agustín Creevy (Clermont, France)
Miguel de Achaval (Asociación Alumni)
Juan Martín Fernández Lobbe (Toulon, France)
Santiago, Fernández (Montpellier, France)
Genaro Fessia (Córdoba Athletic)
Juan Figallo (Montpellier, France)
Agustín Figuerola (Brive, France)
Mariano Galarza (Leinster, Ireland)
Alvaro Galindo (Racing Metro, France)
Lucas Gonzalez Amorosino, (Leicester Tigers, England)
Eusebio Guiñazu (Biarritz, France)
Santiago Nicolas Guzmán (Tucumán R.C)
Juan Martín Hernández (Racing Metro, France)
Alfredo Lalanne (London Irish, England)
Mario Ledesma (Clermont, France)
Esteban Lozada (Edinburgh, Scotland)
Martín Rodriguez Gurruchaga (Stade Français, France)
Rodrigo Roncero (Stade Français, France)
Martín Scelzo (Clermont, France)
Gonzalo Pedro Tiesi (Stade Français, France)
Nicolás Vergallo (Toulouse, France)

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