CRAIG LEWIS analyses some of the defensive issues and Argentina tactics that proved costly in the Boks’ loss last Saturday.
A three-try burst from Argentina midway through the first half is really what buried the Springboks as they slipped to a 32-19 defeat against the Pumas in Mendoza.
Here we analyse where things went wrong, and also spot some of the nefarious actions from Argentina that also contributed to the Boks’ defensive problems.
In the first screen shot below, you can see how Augustin Creevy provides a split second of obstruction that prevents Franco Mostert from folding across to cover a superb inside pass from Nicolás Sánchez to Emiliano Boffelli.
As Mostert battles to get around Creevy, Francois Louw fails to hold his position and prevent the break from Boffelli, with the Bok flanker and Beast Mtawarira ultimately both making a hit on Sánchez.
In this third image, you can then see how Boffelli exposes the space with his pace, and ultimately goes through to set up the first try for Argentina.Soon after this try, Argentina create their second five-pointer off the back of a powerful scrum in the Bok half, but also with a few street-smart tactics. As you can see below, Louw is held by Pablo Matera for just long enough to allow for Argentina to break away from the back of the scrum.
With Louw compromised and unable to make the first tackle on the fringes, Handré Pollard is forced to shoot in to make the required tackle, but a pass just before making the hit allows Argentina to keep the attack going.With Pollard having been forced to shift in, below we see how André Esterhuizen has to follow his lead, but another pass out wide enables the Pumas to continue exploiting the space and disorganisation that has been created.
Louw, having tracked all the way across after being held up at the scrum, eventually attempts to make a covering tackle, but fails to get ahold of his man. One final defensive mixup between Lukhanyo Am and Willie le Roux will ultimately see Bautista Delguy go over to score.
The next try to Argentina comes from a bit of magic from Sánchez, but also a poor decision on defence. The Boks had initially done well to disrupt an Argentina attack from a 5m scrum, but the Pumas managed to get the ball out to Sánchez.
The Argentina flyhalf then uses his searing pace to dart past Siya Kolisi, who makes the decision to cover the player out wide and hope that Faf de Klerk is able to make the first tackle on Sánchez.
However, the second part of this image shows De Klerk unable to reach Sánchez, who ultimately darts between the two and goes over to score a try that sent his side into an unassailable 24-7 lead.
Photo: Andres Larrovere/AFP Photo