Sunday, June 22, 2014

International Rugby: Joaquín Tuculet scores v Scotland

Photo UAR
One of Argentina's players to come from from Europe is Joaquín Tuculet. Having played for the Sale Sharks in the Aviva Premiership in addition to French clubs Grenoble and Bordeaux-Begles the 24 year old fullback returned home in an effort to bolster his chances of regular game time in the senior Pumas squad. Headcoach Daniel Hourcade rewarded Tuuclet by giving him starts against Chile and Ireland and using him as a replacement from the bench against Scotland. Tuculet took his opportunity with both hands as he backed up his well-taken try against Ireland in Tucumán by having an immediate impact from the bench to score a 59th minute try against Scotland after having come on in the 57th minute. 

The skills of Tuculet was on show in the two tries. In crossing against Ireland Tuculet illustrated his ability to side-step off his left foot. The lasting impression that he had made on the Sky Sports commentary team was such that Tuculet was praised immediately upon entering the match in Córdoba. The outside back, though, showed that he has impressive foot-work moving off both feet as his try against Scotland came from him moving off his right foot.  

After receiving a pass just outside the Scottish 22 Tuculet stepped-off his right foot to get passed Scottish back-rower Blair Cowan and move inside British and Irish Lion Sean Maitland. Tuculet then got passed Stuart Hogg with another step off his right foot to score in the left corner. The try put Argentina 19-10 ahead but the missed conversion proved fatal as Scotland came back to win 21-19. 

Tuculet is expected to be named by Daniel Hourcade in Argentina's training squad for the Rugby Championship. The South Americans are to undergo a high performance regime in Pensacola, Florida with El Huevo shortly to confirm who will be added to the thirteen European based players named last month. The soon to be confirmed squad will fly out on Wednesday.

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