Wallabies draw with Pumas
Australia has played out it's second draw as part of the 2020 Rugby Championship, playing out a 15-15 result with Argentina at McDonald Jones Stadium in Newcastle on Saturday.
The Wallabies led by as much as nine points before the fast finishing Pumas levelled things up late in the piece, Reece Hodge missing a potential match winning penalty goal with four minutes remaining.
In a tryless encounter, all the scoring came from the boots of Hodge and Argentina No.10 Nicolás Sánchez for only the second ever draw between the two teams.
In the previous two weeks both the Wallabies and Argentina recorded upset wins against the All Blacks, but the Pumas seemed drained physically and emotionally after their historic 25-15 victory last Saturday.
For their first half dominance Australia only had a 9-6 lead to show for it at the half, despite 70% of possession playing in to the breeze.
Hodge kicked the Wallabies ahead either side of half-time and Australia looked clear favourites when Argentina hooker Julian Montoya was yellow carded for slowing down the ball on 44 minutes.
Hodge extended the lead to 15-6 with a penalty goal in the 56th minute, and that should have been a comfortable enough margin to see Australia home. But the Pumas began to gain ascendancy in the scrum and Sánchez narrowed the lead in the 63rd minute after the Wallabies’ front row collapsed.
Sánchez made it a three point game with a penalty in the 67th minute from 46 metres and then levelled the score at 15-all in the 70th after second rower Matt Phillip was caught carelessly offside. Despite the late flourishes from both teams, that was how it ended.
The Tri-Nations trophy remains up for grabs with all three teams on six competition points.
IMAGE: Townsville Bulletin