Rugby Championship: Australia v Argentina Preview

Rugby Championship: Australia v Argentina Preview

Australia should take heed of Argentina’s powerful performance against New Zealand when they face the South Americans in Queensland on Saturday in Round 4 of the Rugby Championship.

Cbus Super Stadium, Queensland
15 September 2018

To Win
Australia 1/3
Draw 22/1
Argentina 22/10

Australia (-10) 9/10
Argentina (+10) 9/10 
*forecast handicaps

The fact that Mario Ledesma’s chargers trailed the defending champions by just 11-points at half-time speaks volumes for the courageousness and effort they showed on the day.

Skipper Agustin Creevy was his ever-industrious self at the breakdown and with ball in hand, while Nicolas Sanchez commanded his back-line with aplomb, with many a try being sparked by the mercurial number 10’s uncanny ability to execute.

Certainly, if Wallaby coach Michael Cheika opts at persisting with Kurtley Beale at flyhalf in place of the ever-dependable Bernard Foley, the former needs to showcase more attacking endeavour and creativity with second five-eighth partner Matt Toomua in midfield.

In what was a new combination for the side, they more or less passed Cheika’s test in seeing off South Africa 23-18 in Brisbane. Los Pumas, though, are a different kettle of fish entirely and should offer more on the counter than perhaps the Springboks could.

With Argentina currently pipping the Aussies to third on the standings, albeit on points-difference, and with the Boks unlikely to topple the All Blacks heading into the weekend, second spot may well and truly be up for grabs.

The Wallabies made as many as 17-handling errors in their narrow win over the Boks, and if the Pumas’ display in Nelson is anything to go by, they can and will punish needless opposition mistakes.

A key factor on the day will be jet lag (with the men in blue and white having crossed the Tasman twice in as many weeks), and the fact that Creevy’s men made an astounding 204 tackles against the Kiwis also won’t go unnoticed. Coach Ledesma certainly may look at aiming for a tighter game this weekend, but any exhaustive weaknesses on defence will be snuffed out pretty quickly.

Verdict: Australia (-10) 9/10 *forecast handicap
It may well go on to be an extremely tight Test match, but the Wallabies should take it at home to see themselves sitting at a very respectable second place on the Rugby Championship standings after Saturday’s final results.

Written by Shaun Goosen for Hollywoodbets

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