The Jaguares beat the Brumbies 20-15 in an arm wrestle at Jose Amalfitani Stadium, Buenos Aires.
Tries from Sebastian Cancelliere, Matias Orlando and Agustin Creevy were enough to fend off a travel weary Brumbies team fresh off their success in South Africa.
It is the Jaguares‘ sixth win in their past seven matches against Australian opposition. It was also their sixth victory by five or fewer points, and it was a grind.
The Brumbies scored two quick tries through Folau Fainga’a and Tom Banks.
However, the Australians did not score after the interval, surrendering their early advantage meekly.
A Domingo Miotti penalty with 18 minutes remaining, cancelled out Christian Lealiifano’s late first-half goal and was the only points in a drab second stanza.
The first half saw the teams score five tries as the Jaguares overturned a 5-12 deficit to lead by two at halftime.
Wild first half as teams trade blows
The game started at break-neck speed with both sides scoring tries inside the opening seven minutes.
The Jaguares began the game by giving away two penalties in two minutes, allowing Banks to kick to their 22.
Henry Speight knocks on during the attack. Tomas Cubelli picked up the loose ball and raced away to the Brumbies’ half.
He saw Cancelliere free on the right wing, and the scrumhalf kicked a wonderful grubber across the field to Cancelliere, who chased and scores.
The Brumbies hit back soon afterwards with a well-worked lineout move after Creevy infringed at the ruck.
The Australians suckered the Argentinians into thinking a rolling maul was on the cards.
It was a fantastic front of the lineout move, instead, involving Allan Alaalatoa and Fainga’a.
Alaalatoa broke around the blindside of the set-piece and played Fainga’a, who was on the sideline.
The hooker carried Miotti and Cancelliere over the line as he barged over.
Lealiifano missed the conversion to keep the scores all square.
The Jaguares continued to leak penalties and make unforced errors, and the tourists made them pay after another sloppy scrum.
Dan McKellar’s side is the kings of scoring tries off the first-phase ball, and they did so again for the second time in the match.
Samu and Matt Lucas combined from the back of the scrum, attacking the blindside.
The ball was shifted through the hands to the grateful Banks, who dived over in the corner.
The winger beat Jeronimo De La Fuente and Santiago Carreras with his pace to dive over in the corner.
Lealiifano added the extras.
Jaguares fight back
The Jaguares started to find their mojo.
They scored twice from close range. Matias Orlando crawled over after Samu did not hold him in the tackle.
The evergreen Agustin Creevy crashed over from close range after some fancy footwork by try-scorer Cancelliere.
The winger beat three defenders as he powered into the Brumbies half after a turnover in midfield.
Emiliano Boffelli kept the play alive with a clever kick.
The home forwards won possession, recycled to Creevy, whose angled run was unstoppable.
Lealiifano kicked a late penalty before the break after some sustained Brumbies’ pressure.
Second half scrap
It was humid in Buenos Aires, and the tempers began to flare. The game was error-strewn.
Scuffles broke out at regular intervals as the teams became frustrated with their profligacy.
Referee Marius van der Westhuizen had to call the two captains over to tell them he was tired of the dangerous tackles and repeated infringements.
The heat would decide this contest, so to the two teams’ conditioning.
The South Americans enjoyed 78% possession and territory after the break, and they camped inside the opposition’s half.
Unforced errors and ill-discipline were hampering Gonzalo Quesada’s men.
They did, however, get a fortunate penalty when Tom Wright showed his inexperience by getting caught offsides from a defensive scrum outside his 22.
Mistakes mounted, legs tired, and the set-pieces crumbled.
Somehow, after a furious opening 40 minutes, the game fizzled into a scrap.
Miotti slotted the kick to extend the lead to five early in the fourth quarter.
Jaguares hang on and keep Brumbies scoreless with 14 men
Marcos Kremer was sin-binned with 13 minutes remaining for playing the ball on the ground.
The Brumbies laid siege, but somehow, the Jaguares held firm, keeping them out.
It was backs-to-the-wall defending.
Mistakes mounted, legs tired, and the set-pieces crumbled. Somehow, after a furious opening 40 minutes, the game fizzled into a scrap.
Sam Carter knocked on with Tomas Lavanini bearing down on him.
The Jaguares survive the siege to the delight of the home support with some gutsy defence.
They won the following scrum-penalty and cleared their lines.
Silly handling errors continued to keep the tired Aussies interested.
For all the territory and possession the home side had, they still only had three points to show for their endeavours.
McKellar’s men launched a furious fightback. However, they ran out of steam in the heat of South America.
Final Score: Jaguares 20 (17) Brumbies 15 (15)
Tries – Cancelliere, Orlando, Creevy
Pen – Miotti
Con – Miotti
Cards – Kremer (Yellow 66′)
Tries – Fainga’a, Banks
Pen – Lealiifano
Con – Lealiifano
Referee: Marius van der Westhuizen
Assistant Ref 1: AJ Jacobs
Assistant Ref 2: Federico Anselmi
TMO: Santiago Borsani
15 Emiliano Boffelli, 14 Sebastian Cancelliere, 13 Matias Orlando, 12 Jeronimo De La Fuente (captain), 11 Santiago Carreras, 10 Domingo Miotti, 9 Tomas Cubelli, 8 Tomas Lezana, 7 Marcos Kremer, 6 Pablo Matera, 5 Tomas Lavanini, 4 Guido Petti Pagadizaval, 3 Santiago Medrano, 2 Agustin Creevy, 1 Nahuel Tetaz Chaparro.
Replacements: 16 Julian Montoya, 17 Mayco Vivas, 18 Enrique Pieretto Heilan, 19 Rodrigo Bruni, 20 Javier Ortega Desio, 21 Felipe Ezcurra, 22 Bautista Ezcurra, 23 Juan Cruz Mallia.
15 Tom Banks, 14 Henry Speight, 13 Tevita Kuridrani, 12 Tom Wright, 11 Toni Pulu, 10 Christian Lealiifano, 9 Matt Lucas, 8 Pete Samu, 7 Tom Cusack, 6 Jahrome Brown, 5 Sam Carter, 4 Rory Arnold, 3 Allan Alaalatoa, 2 Folau Fainga’a, 1 James Slipper.
Replacements: 16 Connal Mcinerney, 17 Scott Sio, 18 Leslie Leuluaialii-Makin, 19 Darcy Swain, 20 Murray Douglas, 21 Joe Powell, 22 Irae Simone, 23 Andy Muirhead.