Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Argentina vs Ireland 2000

Agustín Pichot
Although Argentina defeated Australia in 1997 the true birth of the South Americans came at Rugby World Cup 1999 when Argentina defeated Samoa, Japan and Ireland to qualify for a first ever Quarter Final. 



Ireland were left shattered and the following year had a change for revenge as Ireland visited Buenos Aires. The former home of Los Pumas, Estadio de Ferrocarril Oeste was the setting for this June international and the Irish were favorites as at this time Argentina still had a mainly amateur team with few players having professional contracts. Many went on to be signed before Rugby World Cup 2003 but for this match the wingers, scrumhalf and frontrow were professionals with most others being based in Argentina.

Ireland sent a strong team led by Ireland´s greatest ever hooker, Keith Wood. The team was coming off a Six Nations campaign of high´s and lows. Ireland had defeated France in Paris for the first time in decades and had also defeated Italy and Scotland but lost to England and Wales. Argentina´s players, in contrast, were playing together for the first time since the Quarter Final loss vs France.

Signs, therefore, pointed to an Irish victory. The resolve of the Pumas players was strong, however, and Agustín Pichot led his country by example and with the master kicker of Gonzalo Quesada on form the South Americans proved that Rugby World Cup 1999 was no fluke and was the start of bigger things.

Argentina

15 Ignacio Corleto
14 Octavio Bartolucci
13 Eduardo Simone
12 Juan Fernandez Miranda
11 Diego Albanese
10 Gonzalo Quesada
9 Agustín Pichot (Captain)
8 Gonzalo Longo
7 Rolando Martín
6 Santiago Phelan
5 Ignacio Fernandez Lobbe
4 Alejandro Allub
3 Martín Scelzo
2 Federico Mendez
1 Mauricio Reggiardo

Ireland

15 Peter McKenna
14 Shane Horgan
13 Rob Henderson
12 Kevin Maggs
11 Justin Bishop
10 David Humphreys
9 Peter Stringer
8 Anthony Foley
7 David Wallace
6 Simon Easterby
5 Malcolm O'Kelly
4 Mick Galwey
3 John Hayes
2 Keith Wood (Captain)
1 Peter Clohessy 

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