Thursday, August 1, 2013

Pumas lineup confirmed to face New South Wales on Saturday

Hernández named at flyhalf
Argentine rugby headcoach Santiago Phelan has confirmed the starting lineup to take on th new South Wales Barbarians in the first of two matches. The starting lineup has a number of surprizes and combined with who did and who did not start against Los Jaguares earlier this week it provides great insight into the potential make-up of the Pumas side to face South Africa in just over two weeks time.
In comparison to th squad that competed in the 2012 Rugby Championship there are four notable changes and not all are injury motivated. both Patricio Albacete and Julio Farías Cabello are not able to fully take part in this weekends match due to injury but Farías Cabello may get gam,e time as a replacement. The result is a start for Mariano Galarza in the secondrow. It will be a home match for the player from La Plata and a real test of his ability as he locks the scrum together with Manuel Carizza. The will play behind Phelan´s prefered starting frontrow of Marcos Ayerza, Eusebio Guiñazú and Juan Figallo.
While Galarza´s selection can be said to be a reflection of the current needs of Los Pumas the same is not true of the backrow. Two of the three players named to start were either not in the 2012 rugby Championship or featured as a replacement. Captain Juan Martín Fernández Lobbe is to start on the side of the scrum at 6, as he did in November. This sees him being joined by Leonardo Senatore who retains the 8 shirt that he claimed in the European tour. Joinig them is not Juan Manuel Leguizamón but, rather, the uncapped Pablo Matera. Leguizamón is not injured. Of those who are injured all are from the frontfive - Albacete, Farías Cabello, Nahuel Lobo and Juan Pablo Orlandi. 
The backline gretaly resembles the Pumas attack from the 2012 Rugby Championship. despite Nicolás Sánchez having impressed at flyhalf in november the pivotal position will be taken by Juan Martín Hernández. This sees Martín Rodríguez Gurruchaga starting at fullback in a back-three that includes Horacio Agulla and Gonzalo Camacho. The same four all started against South Africa in 2012 as did Santiago Fernández who will play inside centre in a solid defensive combination with Gonzalo Tiesi. Whenever fit Tiesi has always been the starting outside centre during the Phelan era.
The opposition team is called the New South Wales Barbarians and not the Waratahs due to contractual obligations that exist in Super Rugby. the team is, however, very much a Waratahs side with it having many Super rugby players but not all due to the team having squad memrs currently training for the Rugby Championship with the Wallabies.

Los Pumas
1 Marcos Ayerza, 2 Eusebio Guiñazú 3 Juan Figallo
4 Manuel Carizza, 5 Mariano Galarza
6 Juan Martín Fernández Lobbe, Leonardo Senatore, 7 Pablo Matera
9 Martín Landajo, 10 Juan Martín Hernández
12 Santiago Fernández, 13 Gonzalo Tiesi
11 Horacio Agulla,  15 Martín Rodríguez Gurruchaga, 14 Gonzalo Camacho

Replacements: Agustín Creevy, Bruno Postiglioni, Marcos Díaz, Julio Farías Cabello, Juan Maunel Leguizamón, Benjamín Macome, Tomas Cubelli, Felipe Contepomi, Marcelo Bosch, Nicolás Sánchez, Juan Imhoff, Joaquín Tuculet, Lucas González Amorosino.


  1. I hope so much this is not Phelan's Rugby Championship team. Creevy, Imhoff and a up to standard goal kicker MUST start.

    I thought it was finally realised by Phelan that Imhoff was the most lethal attacking weapon and Sanchez was the 10. This team suggests he's gone back to the plans he had this time last year.

    Cubelli should start in the RC as well btw.

    1. It is puzzling to see that Agulla is again not getting a chance at 13 after he was so good there from the bench against Wales in 2012. In the same match both Imhoff and Camacho scored good wingers tries. Imhoff scored multiple tries v Los Jaguars as did Camacho. Agulla was tryless. It is clear that Phelan is misuing Agulla.

  2. I agree with all those plans. Cannot understand how those 3 players arent starting.

  3. Paul - can this be streamed from anywhere?

    1. If it helps the game will be live on ESPN Scrum in South America.