Australia rallied in the final quarter to secure a 41-26 victory over Argentina in their Rugby Championship opener in Mendoza on Saturday, but the win may have come at some cost as flyhalf Quade Cooper limped off early in the second period. Argentina led 19-10 at halftime but Australia were much the better side in the second half as they got their driving maul going and scored tries through wing Jordan Petaia, loose-forward Fraser McReight, hooker Folau Fainga’a and centre Hunter Paisami, to go with a penalty try.
As has been the case so often in the past, Argentina were let down by their discipline as they gave away a raft of penalties in the second period having managed tries through loose-forwards Pablo Matera and Juan Martin Gonzalez. The welcome win comes at the end of a difficult 24 hours for coach Dave Rennie’s side, who lost captain Michael Hooper on Friday when the latter opted to return home to Australia, suggesting he was not in the right frame of mind to play the game.
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