Friday, August 30, 2013

Argentina v New Zealand 2001 - Full Match


The case for Argentina to host Rugby World Cup 2023 has been detailed in the book. Central to the argument is the need to make the sport as global as possible. This means that future tournaments ought to, when possible, be taken to new places. Of the seven Rugby World Cup´s played so far all except one have been in a country on mulipte occassions. 



All of Australia, England, France, Ireland, New Zealand, Scotland and Wales have hosted Rugby World Cup matches from more than one Rugby World Cup tournament. South Africa stands alone as the only host to have not had a hand in hosting more than one Rugby World Cup. 

The 2015 edition of the Rugby World Cup will be the third in England and the fourth in Wales. Rugby World Cup 2019, in contrast, will be the first in Japan and also in Asia. Argentina remains the only Semi Finalist in the tournament´s history to never have hosted, co-hosted or sub-hosted a Rugby World Cup. This ought to change in 2023 with the strongest rugby playing nation in the Americas hosting the continent´s first tournament. It would complete the full circle for the sport of rugby as every IRB identified region would then have hosted a Rugby World Cup. FIFA, on the other hand, is yet to have a World Cup played in Oceania. 

The ready-made rugby host nation that is Argentina is just as good and as sensible an option as any other. The onfield achievements of Los Pumas are matched by popularity off the sport as an ever increasing profile has enabled Argentine rugby to reach new heights and sustain itself. The next step of professionalism is set to become reality after Rugby World Cup 2015 with Argentina to join Super Rugby, likely with two teams - one based in Buenos Aires and the other in the north. With the move to add Argentina appearing certain the final box standing in the way of Argentina hosting a Rugby World Cup can be said to have been ticked.

The argument for Argentina hosting a Rugby World Cup is based on a percieved capability. Argentina has a larger player base than two-time hosts Australia and also, crucially, has a record of attracting large crowds for international matches. The start of Argentina´s rise to being a well-supported team arguably began in late 2000 when Argentina hosted South Africa at the largest stadium - El Monumental or River Plate. Twelve months later the All Blacks were the visitors and there was a full house on hand to see New Zealand snatch victory in injury time. Had modern standards existed then it is arguable that New Zealand´s late try would never have occured as it would have been after the completion of 80 minutes.

The image of a packed River Plate Stadium is one which should be sought again from global rugby supporters. The ability to pack the venue for a friendly end of year international speaks wonders of its likely success as the centre-piece for a Rugby World Cup. With Argentina now firmly a part of the Rugby Championship and the domestic PladAR system producing players such as Juan Imhoff, Martín Landajo, Pablo Matera and Nicolás Sánchez there is every reason to believe that Rugby World Cup 2023 in Argentina would be a roaring success with solid crowds throughout the country.

2 comments:

  1. "Had modern standards existed then it is arguable that New Zealand´s late try would never have occured as it would have been after the completion of 80 minutes."

    But they would have stopped the clock in the match so it would have made no difference. They played about 7 or 8 minutes of stoppage time, so the injury time would have been at about 75 or 76 minutes now.

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  2. Memories that. "Richard" McGraw looks like a dwarf next to Jonah, while I can never remember Mendez being so big.

    Thats what Argentina need again. All their front rowers being around 6 foot and weighing 120 plus kgs.

    Back in those days ARG never went backwards!

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