Pumas blood youngsters against NZ

Date published: July 15 2015

Argentina's team to face New Zealand in Christchurch on Friday features three players making their Rugby Championship debuts. 

Coach Daniel Hourcade has named number eight Facundo Isa, lock Guido Petti and wing Santiago Cordero in his starting XV for the competition opener.

21-year-old Isa and 20-year-old Petti both made their Test debuts during last November's tour of Europe. 21-year-old Cordero has earned nine Tests caps since his debut against England in 2013 but has never faced one of the southern hemisphere giants. 

Petti will start in the second row alongside the experienced Stormers lock Manuel Carizza – who has been re-called for his first match for the Pumas since June 2014 – while Nicolas Sanchez will direct traffic from fly-half. 

Jeronimo De la Fuente will start at inside centre with versatile back Juan Martin Hernandez among a group of players rested in preparation for this year's World Cup.

"It's a team built around our previous thoughts," Hourcade told reporters.

"In other words, taking into consideration players who need a rest or are still not 100 percent because of their participation in the European season.

"That gives us a chance to give some younger players a run-out before the World Cup. They've earned their place on the pitch."

Argentina have never won away from home after three campaigns and are chasing their first victory over the All Blacks in 20 attempts.

Argentina: 15 Joaquin Tuculet, 14 Horacio Agulla, 13 Marcelo Bosch, 12 Jeronimo De la Fuente, 11 Santiago Cordero, 10 Nicolas Sanchez, 9 Tomas Cubelli, 8 Facundo Isa, 7 Juan Martin Fernandez Lobbe, 6 Juan Manuel Leguizamon, 5 Guido Petti, 4 Manuel Carizza, 3 Ramiro Herrera, 2 Agustin Creevy (c), 1 Marcos Ayerza.
Replacements: 16 Julian Montoya, 17 Lucas Noguera, 18 Nahuel Chaparro Tetaz, 19 Benjamin Macome, 20 Javier Ortega Desio, 21 Martin Landajo, 22 Santiago Gonzalez Iglesias, 23 Lucas Gonzalez Amorosino

Date: Friday, 17th July
Venue: AMI Stadium, Christchurch
Kick-off: 19:35 local (07:35 GMT, 17:35 AEST, 04:35 ART, 09:35 SAST)
Referee: Craig Joubert (South Africa)
Assistant referees: Angus Gardner (Australia), Stuart Berry (South Africa)
TMO: George Ayoub (Australia)