Wales punish Pumas
- 16 Nov 2013
Wales put on a strong display of running rugby for a 40-6 win over Argentina at the Millenium Stadium.
Scores from Mike Phillips, George North, Toby Faletau and Ken Owens coupled with 20 points from the boot of Leigh Halfpenny were too much for a Pumas team that failed to capitalise on their early opportunities.
Both teams began with plenty of enterprise in attack, and a high-tempo, offloading game was the order of the day. The Argentinians had the better of the first half and indeed were briefly a man up after Justin Tipuric was sin-binned for tackling a player without the ball.
Sparkling runs from wing Santiago Cordero and a chip-and-chase from captain Juan Leguizamon put the visitors in good attacking positions, but errors and good Welsh defence shut them down time and again.
It was from one of these attacks that Wales broke away to open the scoring. A loose Argentinian pass on the home 22 was scooped up by Phillips, who raced home untouched, aided by the supporting run of North.
That added to an early Halfpenny penalty, and the fullback converted for a 10-0 lead inside the opening 10 minutes.
The British & Irish Lions Man of the Series knocked over another three-pointer, before a textbook training maneouvre off a lineout in the visitors' 22 allowed Phillips and North to combine again, with the latter powering through the defence for Wales' second try.
Argentina continued to press, and in fact played most of the rugby in the first half. They eventually got on the board with a Nicolas Sanchez penalty, but that was soon cancelled out by another three-pointer from Halfpenny, taking the score to 23-3 at half-time.
The second-half started slowly, with a penalty apiece for Halfpenny and Sanchez, but it well and truly burst into life on 56 minutes.
Faletau broke off the back of a Welsh scrum on halfway, the ball was spread wide to Halfpenny running the sweeping outside channel, and Liam Williams was put away up the left-hand side. He drew covering fullback Lucas Amorisino and sent the No 8 galloping home for the game's third try.
The hosts then scored again via a powerful driving maul through replacement hooker Owens, which was converted by Halfpenny.
Wales – Tries: Mike Phillips, George North, Toby Faletau, Ken Owens. Conversions: Leigh Halfpenny (4). Penalties: Halfpenny (4).
Argentina – Penalties: Nicolas Sanchez (2).
Wales – 15 Leigh Halfpenny, 14 George North, 13 Cory Allen, 12 Scott Williams, 11 Liam Williams, 10 Dan Biggar, 9 Mike Phillips, 8 Toby Faletau, 7 Justin Tipuric, 6 Sam Warburton (c), 5 Alun-Wyn Jones, 4 Bradley Davies, 3 Rhodri Jones, 2 Richard Hibbard, 1 Gethin Jenkins.
Subs: 16 Ken Owens, 17 Paul James, 18 Samson Lee, 19 Luke Charteris, 20 Ryan Jones, 21 Lloyd Williams, 22 James Hook, 23 Ashley Beck.
Argentina – 15 Joaquin Tuculet, 14 Horacio Agulla, 13 Marcelo Bosch, 12 Santiago Fernandez, 11 Santiago Cordero, 10 Nicolas Sanchez, 9 Martin Landajo, 8 Juan Manuel Leguizamon (c), 7 Julio Farias Cabello, 6 Pablo Matera, 5 Patricio Albacete, 4 Manuel Carizza, 3 Maximiliano Bustos, 2 Eusebio Guinazu, 1 Marcos Ayerza.
Subs: 16 Santiago Iglesias Valdez, 17 Nahuel Lobo, 18 Matías Diaz, 19 Tomas Lavanini, 20 Leonardo Senatore, 21 Tomas Cubelli, 22 Gabriel Ascarate, 23 Lucas Gonzalez Amorosino.
Photo: Stu Forster/Getty Images
Back Bulls to beat Force
Where you should put your money in Super Rugby this weekend, according to MARK KEOHANE.
What we’ve learned
Five lessons from the past weekend's Vodacom Super Rugby matches, according to SIMON BORCHARDT.
‘SA ball skills are poor’
What former Springbok coach NICK MALLETT had to say on SuperSport about Saturday's matches at Kings Park and Newlands.