Nine-try Argentina thrash Namibia

Date published: October 11 2015

Argentina laid down a marker ahead of the World Cup's play-offs when they claimed a 64-19 victory over Namibia in their Pool C clash in Leicester on Sunday.

As expected, los Pumas were in control from start to finish and outscored their opponents nine tries to three and this performance sets them up nicely for next weekend's quarter-final against the winners of the clash between France and Ireland later in the day.

Despite making 11 changes to their starting XV, Argentina turned on the style and several players delivered superb performances which will give their coach Daniel Hourcade a selection headache ahead of their play-off clash.

Namibia were never going to win this encounter especially considering that they were involved in a gruelling clash with Georgia just five days ago and Argentina made full use of their superior fitness especially during the game's latter stages when Namibia were tiring.

The Welwitchias gave a good account of themselves up front, particularly the scrums, but los Pumas took control of the set phases as the match progressed which created plenty of gaps which their backline gladly exploited.

Los Pumas were on the attack from the opening minute and Juan Martin Hernandez scored his first World Cup try since crossing for a brace against Romania at the 2003 tournament as early as the seventh minute after Matias Moroni laid the groundwork with a mazy run in the build-up.

Santiago Gonzalez Iglesias then made it 10-0 from the kicking tee after the Welwitchias were reduced to 14 men in the 10th minute when JC Greyling was yellow-carded for not using his arms in a tackle on Hernandez. 

That setback didn't seem to bother the Africans though and shortly afterwards Johan Tromp pounced on a mistake in los Pumas' backline to score his side's opening try.

Tromp booted a loose ball, close to Argentina's 10-metre line, ahead before regathering and dotting down under the posts. Shortly afterwards, Moroni showed great determination as he ghosted past four defenders to cross for a deserved try under the posts.

Argentina's forwards then set up a solid platform for their backs who took the ball wide to Horacio Agulla who crossed for Argentina's third try, which meant both los Pumas wingers scored in the same World Cup match for the third consecutive time.

Facundo Isa then crossed from a lineout drive to secure Argentina's bonus point in the 35th minute before Lucas Noguera Paz dotted down on the stroke of half-time to give his side a 36-7 lead.

Namibia made a superb start to the second half when Greyling made up for his earlier indiscretion to score his side's second try. The centre gathered a loose ball close to Argentina's 10-metre line and outpaced the cover defence before dotting down under the sticks.

The rest of the match was one-way traffic, however, as Argentina introduced first-choice players like Marcelo Bosch, Juan Martin Fernandez Lobbe, Tomas Cubelli and Juan Imhoff off the replacements bench.

Matias Alemanno crossed for los Pumas' sixth try in the 50th minute but the South Americans were also forced to play with 14 men shortly afterwards when Bosch was sent to the sin bin for a tip-tackle on Theuns Kotze.

That didn't deter Argentina though and the rest of the match became a loose affair as they ran the ball from all areas of the field. Leonardo Senatore soon rounded off under the posts, after the ball went through several pairs of hands in the build-up.

Los Pumas' free-flowing style was rewarded when Julian Montoya and Cubelli also crossed for further five-pointers towards the end and although Namiba played the closing stages with 14 men – after Tinus Du Plessis received a yellow card for taking out Bosch in the air – they got the biggest cheer of the match when Eugene Jantjies rounded off a superb move in injury time.

The scorers:

For Argentina:
Tries: Hernandez, Moroni, Agulla, Isa, Noguera Paz, Alemanno, Senatore, Montoya, Cubelli
Cons: Iglesias 4, Socino 4
Pen: Iglesias
Yellow card: Bosch

For Namibia:
Tries: Tromp, Greyling, Jantjes
Cons: Kotze 2
Yellow cards: Greyling, Du Plessis

Argentina: 15 Lucas Gonzalez Amorosino, 14 Matias Moroni, 13 Santiago Gonzalez Iglesias, 12 Juan Pablo Socino, 11 Horacio Agulla, 10 Juan Martin Hernandez, 9 Martin Landajo (c), 8 Facundo Isa, 7 Javier Ortega Desio, 6 Pablo Matera, 5 Matias Alemanno, 4 Guido Petti, 3 Juan Pablo Orlandi, 2 Julian Montoya, 1. Lucas Noguera Paz.
Replacements: 16 Agustin Creevy, 17 Marcos Ayerza, 18 Ramiro Herrera, 19. Leonardo Senatore, 20 Juan Martin Fernandez Lobbe, 21 Tomas Cubelli, 22 Marcelo Bosch, 23 Juan Imhoff.

Namibia: 15 Chrysander Botha, 14 Johan Tromp, 13 JC Greyling, 12 Johan Deysel, 11 Conrad Marais, 10 Theuns Kotze, 9 Eneill Buitendag, 8 Leneve Damens, 7 Wian Conradie, 6 Rohan Kitsoff (captain), 5 Tijuee Uanivi, 4 Janco Venter, 3 Johannes Coetzee, 2 Torsten Van Jaarsveld, 1 Jaco Engels.
Replacements: 16 Louis van der Westhuizen, 17 Johnny Redelinghuys, 18 Raoul Larson, 19 Renaldo Bothma, 20 Tinus Du Plessis, 21 PJ Van Lill, 22 Eugene Jantjes, 23 Heinrich Smit.

Referee: Pascal Gauzere (France)