The President of the UAR, Luis Castillo told Argentine site ESPN Scrum today that Los Pumas will be using the same three stadiums from the 2012 Rugby Championship again in 2013. Not only will Argentine return to the same venues but the same teams will also be playing again in the same locations. As such Argentina´s first home match of the 2013 Rugby Championship will be against South Africa in Mendoza on August 24 and will take place seven days after South Africa host Argentina in Bloemfontein. Argentina´s third and fourth round matches will be played in New Zealand and Australia. The third round match has been confirmed to be taking place in New Zealand´s fourth largest city, Hamilton on September 07.
Australia will host Los Pumas seven days latter possibly at either Canberra or Perth. The 2012 fixture took place at the Gold Coast but a return is not likely. Australia will be hosting the British & Irish Lions in Brisbane, Melbourne and Sydney and also the All Blacks in Sydney in round one of The Rugby Championship. Neither Melbourne or Brisbane is likely to host South Africa which suggests that Perth could host the Springboks again in 2013 while Argentina could play in Canberra, a venue of a similar size to the Gold Coast and one that Australia has not played a lot of test rugby at.
After returning to South America Los Pumas will play its final two matches at home. Like in 2012 Argentina will host New Zealand in round five and Australia in round six. Both matches were very well attended and are likely to again be full in 2013. Argentina´s 2012 match at La Plata started off well but New Zealand quickly turned the tables while Argentina looked out of steam in its final match, against Australia in Rosario. A return to these venues should provide extra motivation to the players.
Argentina will also host three international matches in June 2013. Similar to the 2012 series which featured Italy playing one test and France two, Argentina will host two incoming nations with Georgia soon to be confirmed for a one-off test and England for two tests. Castillo hinted at four cities - Mar del Plata, Salta, Santa Fé and Tucumán. Of these only Tucumán hosted a test in 2012 while Mar del Plata last hosted in 2010, Salta in 2009 and Santa Fé in 2007. The smallest of the venues is Salta which could well be used to host Georgia. Curiously, however, its 2009 test was against England.
Pumas fixtures for The Rugby Championship 2013
August 17 South Africa v Argentina, Bloemfontein
August 24 Argentina v South Africa, Mendoza
September 07 New Zealand v Argentina, Hamilton
September 14 Australia v Argentina, tba
September 28 Argentina v New Zealand, La Plata
October 05 Argentina v Australia, Rosario
|Photo UAR: Rodrigo Vergara|
Argentina v South Africa at Mendoza August 24, 2013
|Photo UAR |
Argentina v New Zealand at La Plata September 28, 2013
Argentina v Australia at Rosario, October 05 2013