Argentina outplay Italy

2012-06-09 22:45

San Juan - Captain Felipe Contepomi scored 22 points as Argentina made a winning start to their programme of June Tests with a 37-22 victory over Italy here on Saturday.

Contepomi ran in one of four tries by his team and also kicked three penalties and four conversions for the Pumas who will meet France in a two-Test series over the next two weekends.

Italy had the better of the opening half hour at the Estadio del Bicentenario in the western city of San Juan with Kristopher Burton slotting an early penalty and the pack earning a penalty try converted by the flyhalf.

However, Argentina changed ends 13-10 ahead after flanker Tomas Leonardi's try and a conversion by Contepomi, 35, who is winding down his career and unlikely to play for the Pumas in their debut season in the southern hemisphere's Rugby Championship later this year.

Italy scrumhalf Edoardo Gori scored a try from a scrum early in the second half. The home side, who have worked on more attacking ploys under consultant Graham Henry, New Zealand's 2011 World Cup-winning coach, then took the upper hand.

Prop Rodrigo Roncero, in his penultimate international before retiring, No 8 Leonardo Senatore and Contepomi ran in tries between the 54th and 72nd minutes to settle the match.

Flanker Mauro Bergamasco then grabbed another try for Italy converted by replacement back Riccardo Bocchino.



Tries: Tomas Leonardi, Rodrigo Roncero, Leonardo Senatore, Felipe Contepomi. Penalties: Contepomi 3, Conversions: Contepomi 4.


Tries: penalty try, Edoardo Gori, Mauro Bergamasco. Penalty: Kristopher Burton. Conversions: Burton, Riccardo Bocchino


Argentina: 15 Joaquin Tuculet, 14 Belisario Agulla, 13 Gabriel Ascarate, 12 Felipe Contepomi (c), 11 Agustin Gosio, 10 Ignacio Mieres, 9 Martin Landajo, 8 Leonardo Senatore 7 Tomas Leonardi, 6 Genaro Fessia, 5 Julio Farias-Cabello, 4 Benjamín Macome, 3 Francisco Gomez-Kodela, 2 Eusebio Guinazu, 1 Rodrigo Roncero.

Substitutes: 16 Bruno Postiglioni, 17 Nahuel Tetaz-Chaparro, 18 Santiago Guzmán, 19 Tomas De La Vega, 20 Tomas Cubelli, 21 Manuel Montero, 22 Roman Miralles

Italy: 15 Luke Mclean, 14 Giovanbattista Venditti, 13 Roberto Quartaroli, 12 Alberto Sgarbi, 11 Tommaso Benvenuti, 10 Kristopher Burton, 9 Edoardo Gori, 8 Robert Barbieri, 7 Mauro Bergamasco, 6 Alessandro Zanni, 5 Marco Bortolami, 4 Antonio Pavanello, 3 Martin Castrogiovanni, 2 Carlo Festuccia, 1 Alberto de Marchi.

Substitutes: 16 Davide Giazzon, 17 Lorenzo Romano, 18 Joshua Furno, 19 Simone Favaro, 20 Tito Tebaldi, 21 Riccardo Bocchino, 22 Giulio Toniolatti.

Venue: Estadio del Bicentenario, San Juan
Referee: Jerome Garces


  • Nzbro - 2012-06-09 22:53

    bloody well done puma's. Sir Henry's input has helped I hope? Cant wait to meet you guys soon...

  • pablo.cedron.98 - 2012-06-10 00:46

    Well done Pumas. Agree with you Nzbro, Sir Henry´s helped a lot. Hope we can play well and learn a lot in the next Rugby Championship

      Nzbro - 2012-06-10 02:29

      Im very happy to hear that. Yes I also hope the pumas improve to become a feared rugby force to be reckoned with even against the AB's :) . Welcome to the tri nations squad !

  • paul.sdoow - 2012-06-10 13:20

    its a pity its not called tri-nations any more. not because of puma to join but the sound of four nations don't sound right. but i relish the thought of four southern teams battling it out. it will only strengthen south against north. can't wait with nz looking strong and sa and Australia building phase and Argentina on the up it will be close contest between the four and maybe will bring in new ideas and flair

      kndobe - 2012-06-10 14:04

      Rugby championship sounds better, happy about the Pumas as well and i cant wait for the our match againts them.

      paul.sdoow - 2012-06-10 16:01

      it could well be the clash of the semis for world cups to come ? it also means an extra few games of rugby to watch.

  • marcelo.bammer - 2012-06-10 14:02

    People who keep on saying that Argentina is just a Power House Footballing nation doesn't hold true any more. Argentina has proved again and again to be a Power House Rugby nation as well as Argentina is the only contry on planet earth along with England to have their rugby and football national teams in the top 10 IRB and Fifa rankings. The first rugby union match Argentina played was way back in 1879. Argentina got its independence from Spain in 1815, so rugby is as old as Argentina. The English, Irish, Scots and Welsh settlers introduced rugby in Argentina in the 17 century. Argentina's population is made up of mostly Italians about 60%, followed by English, French, Spanish, Germans, Eastern Europeans. About 50% of the Italian Rugby squad have been born in Argentina so Argentinian players are helping develop Italian rugby. I have no doubt that Los Pumas being drafted into the Four nation, it will unleash this sleeping giant.

      pablo.cedron.98 - 2012-06-11 01:06

      Agree with you, fellow countryman Marcelo, except about the population. Its made mostly for Spanish and Italians, and in a smaller part for British, Irish, French, etc. Theres also a big part of native populations. Clearly the British and Irish were a strong influence in our rugby, football, etc. Regards from Buenos Aires

      Ockie - 2012-06-11 08:54

      @pablo. Do not forget the influence that SA had on Rugby development in Argentina. When I was a youngster, SA coaches went over to assist Argentina and we are very proud of our links with your country.

      marcelo.bammer - 2012-06-11 14:45

      Thanks Pablo for your input. As far as the Argentinan population make-up is concerned, you're correct. I've just got the order mixed up. I haven't been back to my home country Argentina since I had set foot on South African soil way back in 1989. However I'm planning to go back soon this year. Saludos from Cape Town.

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