Tuesday, February 21, 2012

A Love For Rugby

Zimbio: Pichot with his kids

The Argentine national anthem is famous in rugby circles due to the significant passion put into performing it by Los Pumas´ players during the pre-match ritual. 

The English translation of the shortened version of the Argentina national anthem that is peformed for rugby matches is as follows:

May the laurels be eternal, (Sean eternos los laureles)
the ones who knew how to win, (que supimos conseguir)
the ones who knew how to win. (que supimos conseguir)
Live crowned in glory... (Coronados de gloria vivamos)
Or let us swear to die gloriously! (o juremos con gloria morir!)
Or let us swear to die gloriously! (o juremos con gloria morir!)
Or let us swear to die gloriously! (o juremos con gloria morir!)

When the Buenos Aires born politician, Vicente López y Planes wrote the lyrics in 1813 he could have had no idea that Argentina´s national mens rugby team would follow through with the anthem in Paris in the Semi Final of Rugby World Cup 2007. The players lived crowned n glory as they played like they were indeed defending their country in war throughout the tournament. In losing to South Africa the players were badly defeated and they knew it but they stayed true to the words of their country´s anthem as they died gloriously. Post match the players were a wreck with the likes of Ignacio Corleto, Juan Fernández Lobbe Juan Leguizamón, Agustín Pichot, Juan Martín Hernández all crying at the Stade de France. Argentina, died gloriously that evening and bounced back extremely well to defeat France five days latter to claim Bronze Medal and to live crowned in glory.

The inspiring performance of Los Pumas in France in 2007 has left a permanent mark on global rugby. The players efforts in triumph and failure won over a nation and that same nation should host Rugby World Cup 2023.

Agustín Pichot: Thank you, thank you for all the effort which they  made, because he believed he had a dream, because he believed we had come to get something. It is in sorrow that we could not follow, because we played to win ... we played to try to impress and we did not play well, but good, eventually.

Juan Martín Hernández: What has taken so much... this illusion, and that in part has happened because you worked for it, it is very difficult to assimilate. I think ... I do not know if we will play this game again, do not know if we will win but I know that these errors won´t come back to help the rival to beat you.

Mario Ledesma: Having come so close and missing out the truth was ... it was terrible and that came one week after... it was very tough because we were very disappointed and very slaughtered because our dream had been broken and for many, there would be no chance to have revenge.

Juan Martín Hernández: And I started to review everything that had happened, he had lived, what we're telling you now and saw Agustin and it was a moment ... well, tears and say things that were there, they will not leave but is a part where he said: "you continue, I no longer will", so then... I´ll try to follow in his footsteps.

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