Saturday, April 13, 2013

Western Province 28-17 Los Pampas XV

Photo: UAR
The fifth round of the Vodacom Cup was not the best one for Argentine side, Los Pampas XV. The South Americans were defeated 28-17 at Newlands Stadium in Cape Town by Western Province. In losing, the Argentine side now sits in third position in the Southern Section and faces the danger of dropping out of the play-off´s zone. The section is led by the Sharks XV who are well out on front with a five point lead. 

Daniel Hourcade will likely have complaints to make to his players after Western Province recovered after the Argentine side had made a perfiect start with winger Manuel Montero scoring a try in just the second minute. Pat Howard went over in the ninth minute but the first half was all about the Pampas XV as the Argentine team held a comfortable halftime lead following an eighteenth minute try to the Worcester Warriors bound backrower Leonardo Senatore. Indeed, the Pampas XV looked to be on course for victory as a try in the fourth minute of the second half by fullback Matías Masera extended the lead. Instead, however, the home side took advantage as Los Pampas XV failed to score any further points while Western Province scored three and also added points through a dropgoal and penalty. 

Round Five Results
Valke 14-74 Blue Bulls
Leopards 27-7 Griffons
Golden Lions 24-11 Griquas
Pumas 154-0 Limpopo
Los Pampas XV 17-28 Western Province
Border 25-26 Free State
Eastern Province 52-10 Eagles
Sharks 54-24 Boland

Northern Section Standings
Pumas 25
Leopards 18
Blue Bulls 18
Griquas 12
Golden Lions 12
Griffons 9
Valke 9
Limpopo 0 

Southern Section Standings
Sharks XV 23
Western Province 18
Los Pampas XV 16
Eastern Province 16
Free State 13
SWD Eagles 7
Boland Kavaliers 7
Border 1


  1. Hi paul. Argentine rugby seems to be going through changes for the better. the individual skill set, especially of the backs is much higher than days of old.

    But looking at the way los pampas 15 went about their business yesterday, the more expansive play is being carried out at the cost of their rigid forward driven "stone mill" defence.

    What do you think?

    P.S. Montero for the RC for sure, but who would you sacrifice among the established 3 quarters they already have?

    1. One of the biggest problems facing the Argentine team in the Vodacom Cup is the lack of continuity. The coahces swap players every week in a bid to expose more players to the tournament. The down side of this is establishing a first choice team simply does not happen. For this reason the academy style rugby of Los Pampas XV has its flaws and with the team playing more enterprizing rugby there are holes in defence that the better sides have been able to expose.

      Montero is highly likely for The Rugby Championship. While Eusebio Guiñazú played in all tests for Argentina in 2012 Montero could do the same in 2013. He certainly appears likely to start against England and Georgia. None of Juan Imhoff, Horacio Agulla and Gonzalo Camacho will play in June but there will be professionals in consideration - Martín Bustos Moyano, Rafael Carballo, Belisario Agulla ad Joaquín Tuculet. Of these only Tuculet is likely to make the squad for TRC and as such the others should play in June.

      Horacio Agulla´s future is as an outside centre. Marcelo Bosch would ppear likely to be used at 12 this year with Tiesi and Agulla being the leading options for the 13 shirt.

      The Graham Henry influence will likely be key this year. Imhoff is sure to be the starting left winger with Montero and Camacho to fight over the right wing. González Amorosino and Rodríguez Gurruchaga will fight for the bench spot behind Hernández.

      v England
      15 Tuculet
      14 Bustos Moyano
      13 Carballo or Ascarate
      12 Contepomi
      11 Montero
      10 Urdapilleta

      TRC first match
      15 Hernández
      14 Camacho
      13 Agulla
      12 Bosch
      11 Imhoff
      10 Sánchez

    2. thx Paul.

      It's interestings to note that you didn't mention santiago fernandez for either summmer tour or RC starts. he is boring but his defence is bigger than the little man that he is.

      also what are the chances of javier alverez rojas breaking through in a couple of years. he can fit in just about anywhere from 9 to 14(haven't asessed him from the back).

      and as you said about los pampas 15 team rotation, why did they use little bruno rodrigo, a wing forward in the second row, when mati alemanno looks and plays like pato albercete?

    3. Santi Fernández remains in the frame but my thoughts are that he will be unlikely to start this year. More likely is that Bosch will start at 12 with Agulla and Tiesi being the 13´s. With Hernández now being the fullback there will not be a replacement flyhalf, meaning it is more likely to have a replacement centre and a utility replacement. This being the case then Tiesi or Agulla will be the 13 with the other on the bench and MRG or LGA will wear the 23 shirt. MRG would appear more likely due to his ability to play at inside centre.

      Incidently Fernández is set to join Castres and likely to be used as a flyhalf and not an inside centre.

      TRC first match
      15 Hernández
      14 Camacho
      13 Agulla
      12 Bosch
      11 Imhoff
      10 Sánchez

      22 Tiesi
      23 MRG

      Bruno is playing secondrow simply because Argentina has a ton of players for the backrow but fewer for the secondrow. De La Vega, Farías, Leonardí, Senatore and Galindo will all play in June. The secondrower to really keep an eye on is Juan Cruz Guillemaín. I expect him to debut this year.