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Scotland shock Argentina


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Chris Paterson marked a memorable day by steering Scotland to victory in Buenos Aires to square the Test series with Argentina at 1-1.

Winning a record 88th cap, Scotland's all-time top points-scorer kicked 16 more as the home side were blown away.

Hooker Ross Ford crashed over for a try as Scotland dominated the first-half.

Juan Fernandez Lobbe replied after the break but Graeme Morrison finished off a great breakaway before Pumas' Horacio Agulla grabbed a late score.

That last-gasp try may prove costly for the Scots, who needed a 15-point win to avoid dropping into the third-seeded nations for the next World Cup.

Head coach Frank Hadden had been under increasing pressure but a first win against Argentina since 1990 may have secured his tenure.

Scotland started with 10 Edinburgh players and performed with greater fluency and freedom to earn just their second triumph of the year.

The visitors made a barnstorming start, pinning the home side back right from the first whistle.

Paterson knocked over two early penalties before Ford bundled over for a well-worked try on 23 minutes.

Some nifty footwork from Ben Cairns kept the ball alive near the touchline and he smartly offloaded to skipper Mike Blair, who slipped Ford in to crash over for the score.

Paterson slotted the conversion from out wide and from a similar position added a penalty 10 minutes later.

The Pumas desperately pushed forward in search of a reply but were repelled time and again by some fierce Scottish tackling.

Matt Mustchin and Alasdair Strokosch put in some impressive hits and John Barclay was on hand to sweep up any scraps.

MY SPORT: DEBATE

Give your reaction to Scotland's win in Buenos Aires

Paterson made light of the swirling wind at the Velez Sarsfield Stadium to send over a long-range penalty early in the second half but Federico Todeschini was left to rue missed attempts either side of the half-time break.

However, the home side burst into life on the hour and Fernandez Lobbe touched down after a period of sustained pressure.

Lucas Borges was next to breach the Scottish defence but a superb intervention from Paterson dislodged the ball to prevent a certain try.

The much-maligned Dan Parks replaced Phil Godman at fly-half for the closing 10 minutes and the substitute made an immediate impact.

He snaffled a loose Argentine pass in his own half and raced forward before sending Morrison under the posts with a precise looping pass.

Some of the sheen was taken off a great performance when Argentina added a late try.

With 80 minutes gone, the Scots could not get their hands on the ball and Agulla burst past a tired Paterson to touch down for the Pumas.

Argentina: Bernardo Stortoni; Lucas Borges, Gonzalo Tiesi, Felipe Contepomi (capt), Horacio Agulla; Federico Todeschini, Nicolas Vergallo; Juan Manuel Leguizamon, Juan Fernandez Lobbe, Martin Durand; Esteban Lozada, Ignacio Fernández Lobbe; Santiago Gonzalez Bonorino, Alvaro Tejeda, Marcos Ayerza

Replacements: Pablo Gambarini, Juan Gomez, James Stuart, Alvaro Galindo, Alfredo Lalanne, Federico Martin Aramburu, Federico Serra

Scotland: Hugo Southwell; Chris Paterson, Ben Cairns, Graeme Morrison, Simon Webster; Phil Godman, Mike Blair (capt); Allister Hogg, John Barclay, Alasdair Strokosch; Scott MacLeod, Matt Mustchin; Euan Murray, Ross Ford, Allan Jacobsen

Replacements: Dougie Hall, Alasdair Dickinson, Alastair Kellock, Kelly Brown, Rory Lawson, Dan Parks, Nick De Luca

Referee: Alain Rolland (IRL)

Fantastic win :D

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Good result

However its a bad day when Argentina, who only started taking rugby seriously a few years ago are regarded as a big scalp for Scotland to take.

I don't know. I think it's got more to do with the improvement in Argentina than the demise of Scottish Rugby. Think at times Scotland has performed really well over the last few years and certainly better than they were for the period before that it's just the consistency that needs improving. Any rugby fan should be happy that other regions/nations are starting to take the game seriously. Means teams outside the 6 Nations and Tri-Nations have a chance at winning something (albeit slim).

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Good result

However its a bad day when Argentina, who only started taking rugby seriously a few years ago are regarded as a big scalp for Scotland to take.

The Argies are an excellent team just now. Whilst still the weakest of the 4 main Southern Hemisphere nations, you could make a good shout for them being as good, if not better, than anything from the Northern Hemisphere as this moment. Very few teams go to Argentina and get a result, as they have an excellent home record.

Argentina really need to try and join the Tri-Nations or the 6 Nations. They are good enough to hold their own in these tournaments, and would aid the development of Argentine rugby, which can only be good for the world game to have another top class nation.

I agree but the problem is the travel. SA, NZ and Australia are all quite close to each other and pretty far from Argentina and the European teams are even further. Are either of the competitions even going to want them to join? In the case of them joining the Tri-Nations they might also have to extend the Super 14 competition to include Argentinian teams and I don't see that happening either. In the case of the 6 Nations there are a number of European teams that would have to be included before you could think about signing Argentina up.

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