Los Pumas outclass Americans


Argentina finished a disappointing World Cup campaign on a positive note by beating the USA 47-17 in Kumagaya on Wednesday. TOMMY DOLEMAN reports.

Joaquin Tuculet scored a first-half double to set Los Pumas on their way before Juan Cruz Mallia added a double of his own in the second half to give Argentina a comfortable win.

The USA held Argentina scoreless for almost 20 minutes before Nicolas Sanchez exchanged passes with Mallia, scored the opening try and then converted his own score.

Sanchez was excellent in the first half as he laid on the next dot-down for Tuculet, before the fullback added a third Argentina try leading into half-time.

Blaine Scully reduced the arrears a minute before the break, but two scores from Mallia early in the second period put paid to American hopes.

Jeronimo De La Fuente and Gonzalo Bertranou added further tries in the second half to extend the Pumas’ lead, with Scully and Paul Lasike weighing in with consolations for the Eagles.

Argentina finish their Pool C campaign with 11 points, having suffered defeats to England and France, while the USA will hope to avoid bottom place with a win over Tonga on Sunday.

For Argentina, Wednesday’s match marked the end of an era, with veteran loose forward Juan Manuel Leguizamon signing off from Test rugby after winning an 87th cap.

Argentina – Tries: Nicolas Sanchez, Joaquin Tuculet (2), Juan Cruz Mallia (2), Jeronimo de la Fuente, Gonzalo Bertranou. Conversions: Sánchez (5), Benjamin Urdapilleta.
USA – Tries: Blaine Scully (2), Paul Lasike. Conversion: AJ MacGinty.

Match stats

Argentina – 15 Joaquin Tuculet, 14 Bautista Delguy, 13 Juan Cruz Mallia, 12 Jeronimo de La Fuente, 11 Santiago Carreras, 10 Nicolas Sanchez, 9 Felipe Ezcurra, 8 Rodrigo Bruni, 7 Juan Manuel Leguizamon, 6 Pablo Matera (c), 5 Matias Alemanno, 4 Guido Petti, 3 Santiago Medrano, 2 Julian Montoya, 1 Nahuel Tetaz Chaparro.
Subs: 16 Agustín Creevy, 17 Mayco Vivas, 18 Enrique Pieretto Heiland, 19 Marcos Kremer, 20 Tomas Lezana, 21 Gonzalo Bertranou, 22 Benjamin Urdapilleta, 23 Matías Moroni.

USA – 15 Mike Te’o, 14 Blaine Scully (c), 13 Bryce Campbell, 12 Paul Lasike, 11 Marcel Brache, 10 AJ MacGinty, 9 Ruben de Haas, 8 Cam Dolan, 7 Hanco Germishuys, 6 Tony Lamborn, 5 Greg Peterson, 4 Nate Brakeley, 3 Titi Lamositele, 2 Joe Taufete’e, 1 Eric Fry.
Subs: 16 Dylan Fawsitt, 17 Olive Kilifi, 18 Paul Mullen, 19 Ben Landry, 20 Ben Pinkelman, 21 Nate Augspurger, 22 Will Hooley, 23 Martin Iosefo.