Friday, October 4, 2013

Can Felipe Contepomi achieve redemption against Australia?

In an impressive 15 year international career, one of Argentina's greatest talents Felipe Contepomi has surprisingly only played Australia 5 times, in which matches he hasn't had the greatest of memories.

His first match against the Wallabies was at full back in June 2000 in a 53-6 thrashing in Brisbane. But possibly the worst match in his career personally was his first home match against Australia in November 2002 in Buenos Aires.

After pushing close New Zealand the previous year, the passionate crowd of 65,000 at the River Plate Stadium hoped to see an upset against Australia, but Contepomi cost the match.

In what was a pretty low standard dismal game, Argentina's forwards outplayed the Wallabies and created opportunity of opportunity, but Contepomi just couldn't get a kick over, he was striking the ball well but constantly wide. He finished the match with 2 successful penalties from 9 attempts, missing 21 points in total, a margin that would have easily been enough to win the game which finished 17-6. Australia with Matt Burke and Elton Flatley as kickers on the otherhand, only missed one conversion all match from out on the touchline. Contepomi finished the match getting booed out of the stadium by his home fans, a nightmarish scenario for any player.

Contepomi played Australia again in the 2003 World Cup a year later, and although he had a decent game with ball in hand he again struggled with the boot with some crucial missed kicks leaving Argentina with less out of the game than they deserved.

In 5 attempts, Contepomi has never beaten Australia, and that game in 2002 is the only time he's ever played them in Argentina. In what may be his final game for the Pumas this weekend, he will play Australia in front of his home fans for a second time, and can finally get a chance for redemption and close out his international career with a win over a SANZAR side that is missing from his CV, and finally make up for the disaster in Buenos Aires 11 years ago.

Contepomi will start at inside centre outside the player many are thinking is key to, Argentina´s success of failure in 2015. Nicolás Sánchez is twelve years younger than Contepomi. 

1 comment:

  1. Redemption indeed. He was poor in the most recent game as well! And JM Hernanadez needs to pull his socks up as well after some sub-par performances.