Maybe it’s because they’re part of the cat family.
Or sheer bullishness because they beat them twice in 2019.
But two Lions stalwarts on Tuesday emphatically stated the Jaguares’ case for staying in Super Rugby.
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The Argentinians’ participation was put in the spotlight earlier this week after former Wallaby hooker Phil Kearns opined that the team should be removed from the competition because the majority of its squad consists of national players.
“They’re the national team. They shouldn’t even be in the comp. This is a provincial competition,” he said on Fox Sports.
The Jaguares have undeniably underperformed in their first three seasons, but look set to make an impact in 2019 as they currently top the South African conference and are expected to stay there.
The Lions did, however, break their Buenos Aires hoodoo at the start of the campaign and triumphed in the return game too.
Here’s what Courtnall Skosan and Andries Coetzee had to say on the issue.
Every away game for them is a few thousand kilometers and I feel for them in that regard. We’ve played against them quite a few times now and I wouldn’t say they shouldn’t be part of Super Rugby. They’re a very competitive side and always come out fighting. If they had more teams, they could probably fill another team. Whoever we play against, we have to face them.
Everyone deserves their spot. At the end of the day, you want to play against the best in the world and the Jaguares are one of those teams. It’s these type of teams that improve you as a player.
The ‘issue’ doesn’t bug me at all. It is what it is. We’ve beaten them twice this year, so we really can’t say they’re not allowed to play Super Rugby because they’re an international team. I believe the Jaguares is a team that brings out the best in us too and that’s great.
You’re playing an international team and as an individual it’s a great honour and challenge to play against players of that calibre. I believe they belong in Super Rugby.