Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Benjamin Urdapilleta´s fine form continues for Oyonnax

Argentina´s Benjamin Urdapilleta backed up his 20 point haul against Auch with another fine performance this past weekend as he scored 23 points for Oyonnax in its Pro d2 away match against Béziers. Urdapilleta moved to France this season after having played for the Harlequins in England but not being able to take firm control of a starting place due to former All Blacks flyhalf Nick Evans.  This saw Urdapilleta played out of position as be was predominantly used as a centre. He played for the Harlequins for two seasons and is now looking like playing in the first division again, but in the French Top 14 as Oyonnax are looking very much like winning promotion. Oyonnax´s 33-28 victory keeps the club in firm control of the Pro d2 as it is on 57 points, 14 more than the second placed Pau who has seen its position strengthened thanks to a surprize 19-9 victory over Lyon. The result sees Lyon drop from second to fifth with La Rochelle and Aurillac also both going ahead of the club representing France´s second largest city.  

Urdapilleta remains in the Pumas frame, especially for the June 2013 internationals in which the European based players who will feature in The Rugby Championship will not be selected. In 2012 Urdapilleta and Ignacio Mieres were the players used at flyhalf against Italy and France while Juan Martín Hernández and Nicolás Sánchez took over for The Rugby Championship and the November Internationals. Urdapilleta and Mieres are both in contention again and there is the possibility of players frmo the Pro d2 being selected. Two players who will be considered are Gabriel Ascarate and Juan Pablo Socino. Both started at inside centre in the Pro d2 this past weekend with Ascarate´s Carcassonne losing 22-21 against Pays d´Aix and  Socino´s Dax losing 25-15 against Albi. 

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