Argentina’s Jaguares extended their run without a loss to six straight wins after beating the Sharks 29-13 with a bonus point at Estadio Jose Amalfitani in Buenos Aires.
The Jaguares went through their tour of Australia and New Zealand without losing and at home in Argentina in recent weeks have beaten the Bulls and for the first time in their history the Sharks.
The result is the Jaguares 8th win from 13 matches and moves them provisionally up to fifth place overall on 34 points.
The Jaguares are just two points behind South African Conference leaders the Lions who have 36 points and 7 wins from 13 matches. The Lions position at the top of the SA Conference is under real threat.
The Sharks have played 13 matches and won 5 (and drawn one) but on 28 points are looking very unlikely to feature in the play offs.
The Jaguares were deserved winners and led the scoreboard throughout the match. They scored two late tries to earn the bonus point – one after the Sharks lost Ruan Botha to a red card for a reckless shoulder charge to the head of a Jaguares player in the 73rd minute but the match was all but won by the time he left the field.
Nicolas Sanchez opened the scoring in the 12th minute with a penalty and four minutes later the Sharks could have levelled the scores with a penalty in front of the posts but Robert du Preez missed with his attempt.
Sharks fullback Curwin Bosch also missed with his penalty attempt in the 25th minute.
Three minutes later Ramiro Moyano scored the first of his three tries after a break from fullback Emiliano Boffelli who constantly troubled the Sharks.
Sanchez added the conversion but four minutes later the Sharks fumbled the ball and conceded a penalty in front of the posts. The hosts took the penalty quickly and went wide where Moyano was open and ran in his second try.
The Sharks scored their first try a minute before the break from a line out which allowed Ruan Botha to crash over and score the visiting side’s only try. Du Preez ended the half with the conversion which took the half time score to 17-7.
The Sharks made a better start to the second half as they were the first to score with two penalties and Du Preez landing both. The two Sharks penalties were the only points scored in the second half until the 70th minute when Moyano set up Bautista Delguy for the Jaguares first try of the second half.
In the final minute the Sharks conceded a penalty which allowed the Jaguares to set up a line out and then maul on the Sharks 5m line. The hosts sucked the Sharks defence in and then went wide for Moyano to score his hat-trick and the bonus point try in the corner.
Bofelli took over the kicking duties for the final conversion on the touch-line but he was well side.
The Jaguares and Sharks will now break for the June Internationals so they will not be involved in the 16th round of Super Rugby next week.
The Jaguares next match is at the end of June in round 17 against the Stormers in Buenos Aires while the Sharks play the Lions in Durban also on Saturday 30 June.
Final Score Jaguares 29 (17) Sharks 13 (7)
Tries -R.Moyano 3, B.Delguy
Pen – N.Sanchez
Con – N.Sanchez 3
Tries – R.Botha
Pen -R. du Preez 2
Con – R. du Preez
Cards – R. Botha (73rd min Red)
Referee: Paul Williams
Assistant Ref 1:Damian Schneider
Assistant Ref 2:Jose Covassi
TMO :Santiago Borsani
15 Emiliano Boffelli, 14 Bautista Delguy, 13 Matias Orlando, 12 Jeronimo de le Fuente, 11 Ramiro Moyano, 10 Nicolas Sanchez, 9 Gonzalo Bertranou, 8 Javier Ortega Desio, 7 Marcos Kremer, 6 Tomas Lezana (captain), 5 Tomas Lavanini, 4 Guido Petti, 3 Nahuel Tetaz Chaparro, 2 Agustin Creevy, 1 Santiago Garcia Botta
Replacements : 16 Julian Montoya, 17 Javier Diaz, 18 Santiago Medrano, 19 Matias Alemanno, 20 Leonardo Senatore, 21 Martin Landajo, 22 Bautista Ezcurra, 23 Juan Cruz Mallia
15 Curwin Bosch, 14 Sbu Nkosi, 13 Lukhanyo Am, 12 Andre Esterhuizen, 11 Lwazi Mvovo, 10 Robert du Preez, 9 Louis Schreuder, 8 Daniel du Preez, 7 Jean-Luc du Preez, 6 Philip van der Walt, 5 Ruan Botha (c), 4 Tyler Paul, 3 Thomas du Toit, 2 Akker van der Merwe, 1 Tendai Mtawarira
Replacements :16 Franco Marais, 17 Juan Schoeman, 18 Ross Geldenhuys, 19 Stephan Lewies, 20 Jacques Vermeulen, 21 Cameron Wright, 22. Makazole Mapimpi