Friday, February 14, 2014

Retro Friday - Santiago Cordero scores against Wales in Junior World Championship

With the Pacific Cup just around the corner this week´s edition of Retro Friday is taking a look back at a try scored by Puma Santiago Cordero in the 2013 IRB Junior World Champíonship in France. Cordero is one of as number of players from the tournament to now be a part of the predominantly young Pampas XV squad in Australia preparing for the tournament.

Cordero started on the wing for the Argentine side against Australian Super Rugby franchise the Western Force earlier today. A full strength Western Force side was too strong for the South Americans. The 29-6 result saw the Australians scoring three four to zero against a number of probable players to play for the Argentine franchise that will enter Super Rugby in 2016. Confirmation will be made next Thursday.

The points scored against the Western Force came from the boot of 19 year old Rosario fly half Patricio Fernández who many have suggested could well be a long term option for Argentina at fly half. As a play maker he is an exiting talent - one different to the stereotypical Pumas number 10. His exciting running game has him being more in the mould of an Australian or a New Zealander but he has a lot to work on if he is to be a Puma.

Goalkicking has been an issue for Argentina in recent years but Nicolás Sánchez appears to have solved the issue. Fernández has been reliable as a goalkicker but not entirely. Indeed, against the Force, he was not on target with all his attempts. Together with Fernández, Cordero was the stand-out back for Los Pumitas in the 2013 IRB Junior World Championship and both trained with the Pumas swuad ahead of the Rugby Championship.

Cordero went on to be selected by Daniel Hourcade on Argentina´s European tour in November where he made his debut and was also selected to play for the Barbarians against Fiji at Twickenham. Cordero was the starting fullback, the position in which he has ran teams ragged at junior level. One try of note was scored against Wales in the pool defining encounter in Nantes in which Wales won 25-20 to send Argentina into the 5th-8th place play-offs. Wales went on to lose the final against England while Argentina finished sixth after losing 37-34 against France.

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