Cheika expected Pumas clash

Date published: October 23 2015

Australia Media Access

Australian coach Michael Cheika revealed that he expected Argentina to reach the semi-finals of the World Cup.

Last week's quarter-finals saw wins for all four of the Rugby Championship nations, with Argentina making easy work of Six Nations winners Ireland in their match.

When Cheika was asked if he was surprised at the result, the answer was an emphatic 'no'.

"No not at all, I expected it totally," said the former Waratahs coach.

"We see them on a regular basis over the years now at the Rugby Championship so we're not surprised at all about their position here. I would say that we would have expected it so we've been preparing accordingly."

With the breakdown and the scrum being  key areas of competition on Sunday, Australia have a wild card up their sleeve in the form of Mario Ledesma, an Argentine forwards coach.

"It's interesting because we're up against his country of birth he's played passionately for," added Cheika.

"You go into battle against those guys that you played with for many years and I think it inspires you to do better.

"Obviously he's been brought in to deal with the set-pieces predominantly. One of the big reasons it was easy to bring Mario in is the fact that he has a very good way of expressing himself in English.

"I know from having coached in foreign countries that it's one thing talking the language but another thing to make your point in a rugby sense."

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