SECOND HALF: Refresh this article for live updates. Full Time: Argentina 15 – 29 Australia
Fulltime: It’s all over at Twickenham. It will be an Australasian Rugby World Cup Final as Australia will meet favourites New Zealand next Saturday.
80m+ – Argentina are playing for pride now. Can they get one over this Aussie defence?
80m – 40 seconds to go, Ashley-Cooper gets the ball and clears. This is now (almost) officially over.
79m – Under a minute to play now, Argentina remain within the Australian 22. They need to score and score fast.
78m – Another wonderful backline play by the Argentines gains them 20m from their own 22. Sanchez floats another one in the next phase and they’re into the Australian 22m. Toucoulet again breaks forward! Have we called this over too soon? There’s fire in the Argentine eyes right now. The Australian defence has risen in their own half all game, and so they do again. Big hits have slowed this attack right down.
76m – A big hit it is, but Australia hold onto the ball. It’s cleared by them, sent back by Toucoulet and claimed by Beale. Penalty Australia for an infringement at the breakdown, and Australia send it straight back into Argentina’s 22. That’s where they will want to play the rest of this game.
75m – Scrumdown to Australia on their own 10m line, can Argentina’s pack summon up one more big hit?
75m – It has been a resounding defensive display by Australia, that has been what sealed them this win. Their go-forward backline has been strong, but their loose-trio won them this game at the breakdown without a doubt.
73m – Foley adds 2, it’s a 14 point game now.
72m – TRY TIME! And surely over now… Drew Mitchel broke countless tackles, weaving his way 40m across the field to pass off to Adam Ashley-Cooper to dot down in the corner for his hat-trick. Argentina are surely done now, it will be an Australasian final at this year’s Rugby World Cup final. 15-27 Australia
71m – The throw in is mauled by Australiabut it doesnt get far.
71m – Pocock and Scott Fardy have been world class today, they’re doing all the fetching and getting that ball back whenever their side loses it.
70m – No. It’s lost forward by them again. Australia clear and it will be Toucoulet to clearback. It will be an Australian throw on the half-way line. Argentina need that ball back.
70m – It’s again Corderro who runs it up and gains 15m for his side! Superb game for him so far – the Australian defence is savage right now though, the hits keep flying in. 10 minutes to go, can the South American’s score?
69m – Australia are not firing it down the backline anymore, it’s grinding stuff. But Beale loses it forward! Ball back in Argentine hands!
68m – Throw in Australia on Argentina’s 10m line. It’s scrappy by them, but they’re holding on to it.
67m – Instead the kick goes to the 22m line, Australia win the lineout and fly through the Argentine defences. The ball is dislodger in Slipper’s drive forward, and De La Fuente clears.
66m – Toucoulet sends an up and under into the heavens, but it doesn’t go far enough. His entire side (almost) is called offside. Penalty in a kickable position for Australia.
65m – Not sure if it’s the Aussie loose trio losing puff or the Argentine 6,7,8 gaining traction, but the breakdowns have been better for Argentina this half.
65m – The throw is good and Sanchez runs it up onto the advantage line for his team mates.
65m – Time is running out for the Pumas, they need to score at least twice to take this one. 15 minutes to go
64m – Argentina drive it all the way 10m out… but lose it on the ground for the umpteenth time. Ngenya clears, throw in to Los Pumas near the half-way line.
63m – Great play by the Argentine backline, they’re school-boy passing it between defenders, inspiring offloads by them. Toucoulet is bringing his brethren forward!
63m – The Australian scrum has finally made a challenge, but Argentina hold on and run it out wide. Isa again driving it forward.
62m – Play is pulled back for an Argentine advantage, accidental offside by Folau, it’s an Argentine scrum right on the restart mark.
61m – Calamity of errors by the Australians there. The throw in is poor, then the gather is passed forward into Argentine hands, probably 5m.
61m – Drew Mitchel brings it up for the Aussies now, what a quiet game the winger has had thus far. Foley lines up the drop from 45 out! No where near for him. Aussies are not playing percentage rugby right now, but they are winding the clock down. Argentina thump it out for an Aussie throw, 40m from the South American try line.
60m – They wont get the chance, the throw is long and Australia gather on the half-way line.
60m – The clearance is beyond the half-way line. Throwin to Los Pumas, lets see if they can get that electric backline to click off of this set-play.
59m – And so they get it! Isa picks up from the base, gaining a penalty. Ref calls it back. Argentina will have a chance to clear their lines here.
58m – So: Scrum to Argentina 20m from their own line. They’re going to want another monster hit.
58m – Sanchez is down for Argentina, that is a worry if you support Los Pumas – he’s been a class above the rest today.
58m – They got to all of 5m out, lost their advantage and have then knocked it on 2om out from the Argentine line. Poor from the Aussies, they’ve been finishing off from there today.
57m – Up to phase 8 now for the Aussies, it’s becoming a grinding task for them, penalty advantage given to the Aussies, offside from the Argentine defence. Play continues
56m – The enigmatic Beale is in possession, and he gains about 30m of running, but it’s all sideways.
56m – You get the feeling that it will be the next try that decides this match. Argentina will hope beyond hope that they’re the ones to get it.
56m – What a special kick clear there by Touculet – his left boot is swinging sweetly, why have Argentina made such rare use of it today? Thrown in to the Aussies on the half-way line.
55m – Foley restarts with a kick onto the Argentine 22. Huge hit by Drew Mitchell on the catching Sanchez.
54m – This time Sanchez does look to the poles, and so he slots it again! 5 from 5 by him, it’s a 7 point game again. 15 – 22 to Australia
54m – It’s tough not to watch this Argentine style and love it – inspiring attacking play by them. They’ve won a penalty as Simmons takes the man out in the air.
53m – Instead Argentina will kick for the corner – Lineout to them about 15m out from the Aussie try line.
53m – It’s a game of margins right now. Supreme counter-attacking by Argentina and fantastic defence from the Aussies – which shall prevail? Penalty Argentina, this to get it back to a 7 point game.
52m – Toucoulet breaks forward! But he recklessly passes at the contact point, Australia clear AGAIN and Argentina run it straight back. Pressure mounting from Hernandez and co.
52m – Argentina are playing a dangerous game at the breakdown, they’re not committing many men and Pocock is menacing them at the stopping points.
51m – Substitute Isa piles into Foley and Ngenya, great driving forward from the Argentines, the momentum remains with them this half.
50m – Turnover for the Aussies, Ngenya clears. Argentina in possession now on their own 10m line. Corderro again with a great run off of Sanchez.
49m – Sanchez finds 5m as he again breaks the line.
49m – Restart is cleared by Beale, but he doesn’t find touch. Argentina in possession 40m out now.
48m – Foley finds his radar, it’s 3 for the Aussies.
47m – Interesting substitution… Kurtley Beale is on for Matt Giteau who we would assume has a knock.
47m – Giteau bundled into touch, throw taken quickly and kicked down field by Argentina. As Australia gather, Juan Martine Hernandez loses his feet at the breakdown, and Australia have a penalty of their own again. Can Foley find his rhythm and slot this one?
46m – Corderro with some great stepping as he catches the restart kick, but he loses it (not for the first time) in contact. Aussies with ball in hand 15m out.
45m – No mistake from Sanchez, what a brilliant kicker her is, the gap is now 7. Argentina have gotten that first score and the momentum in this game now. It’s 12-19 to Australia.
44m – Another monster South American scrum! Penalty Argentina! James Slipper is being tossed around like a rag doll in the front row.
44m – Poor throw… it’s an unforced error from the Argentines again. They’ve got to tighten it up, they’re putting so much pressure on their own shoulders.
43m – Twickenham is behind Los Pumas! “OLE PUMAS PUMAS” is the chant!
43m – There’s the fire their fans have been calling for! Penalty against Australia for holding on. This will be kicked into the Wallaby 22.
43m – Argentina restart from their 22 with a strong chase.
42m – Bernard Foley is lining up the kick, 35m out, just to the left of centre field. He’s pulled this as he did his last kick, a let-off early on for the Argentines
41m – Australia now kick off playing from right to left – early penalty at the take given against Argentina. They would have been aiming to score first this half, but this mistake could put pay to that.
FIRST HALF: Refresh this article for live updates. Current Score: Argentina 9 – 19 Australia
40m + – Argentina are searching for a big left shoulder now. They’re only 5 out, but it’s an Aussie put in. The scrum is down, but the ref calls play on… it’s booted into touch – oranges and water time for the 30 players on the field.
40m + – Contentious call from the ref… replays seem to show it was not forward. He’s not a popular man in Buenos Aires right now!
40m – A minute to go and Argentina are cracking the Aussie lines. Great moves from their backs, and it’s Sanchez to break forward! They’re 5m out and it’s knocked on, so unlucky for Argentina, what great rugby by them. They will need a lot more of this in the second 40minutes.
39m – Argentina have cleared down field, giving Folau a chance to return with interest back to Argentina’s own 10m for a thrown to Los Pumas.
38m – Lineout stolen! Argentina have stolen an Aussie lineout on the half-way line. Can they get a try to boost morale at the half-time break?
37m – 12 missed tackles thus far for Argentina, it’s a telling statistic.
36m – It’s an easy 3 point penalty to Argentina as Lavanini returns to the field, the gap is now down to 10 points. 9-19 to Australia.
34m – Australia smell blood, they’re running it out of their 22 at the restart before thumping to towards the half-way line for an Argentine throw.
34m – A wild kick from Foley, it will just be 5 from that Cooper try.
33m – Giteau has been influential to this Australian midfield since being recalled at the start of the Rugby Championship. He’s really showing what a class act he is.
32m – TRY TIME! Matt Giteau pulls two defenders and floats a lobbing pass to Adam Ashley-Cooper who slots into the corner again for 5. 6-19 now to Australia.
31m – Australia only 5m out now after some supreme running by Folau.
31m – Ref is calling for stability on this scrum set. Put in to Australia but Argentina again shoves hard even with a numbers disadvantage!
30m – Strong counter-rucking from the Aussies! They’ve managed to win back the ball as play is stopped. The tight 5 has been fantastic for the South Americans, but their loose forwards have been non-existent thus far.
30m – It’s route one as Argentina look to wind down the clock until Lavanini comes back on.
29m – It’s an Argentine scrum, can their 7 unit hold up to this hit? They don’t have to! Australia blown up for the early shove. A chance now for Argentina to clear.
28m – Turnover Argentina! Their tight five have smoked the Australians again, the rest of the side need to step up to the game they are playing. What an effort by them.
28m – Into the corner it goes again, but the maul is sacked by Argentina.
26m – The resulting penalty switch is thumped by the Aussies into the 22. Argentina instantly attack their maul. Penalty called for Australia for wheeling the maul.
26m – It’s a bit too predictable from the Australia offence right now, they need some dynamism from the 9-10 and Ngenya is forced onto the boot. It’s straight out – Argentina looking to have the throw, but they are now down to 14 men and the crowd is livid! Lavanini is off for not using his arms in the tackle, it’s a poor decision from the ref, very very poor.
25m – Great contest in the air from the restart, but Argentina have it and instantly thump it down field – They’re looking to counter Australia’s territory game now.
24m – It’s a penalty to Argentina, tough from near the touch line – but Sanchez makes no mistake! It’s 6-14 to Australia as Argentina close the gap by 3.
23m – Argentina with a huge hit! The second shove was called for, grunts ensued and for the first time this World Cup, the Australian scrum was driven to pieces.
22m – The scrum falters. It will be a reset.
21m – The forwards are being called on. Strong counter-maul from the Wallabies though – they’ve stopped it at the cause and another chance for Argentina goes a-begging. Scrum called for Australia, still 5 from their own line.
21m – Throw to Argentina from the ensuing penalty. They’re 5 out.
19m – Argentina are taking their penalties quickly trying to spark some fire in this game. Rob Simmons is blown up for diving in at maul time. Poor from the forward who has had such a strong game thus far.
18m – The kick is towards the corner for Argentina. Their backline will have the chance to show one off from the training field. In first phase contact they again lose it! Where are the South American forwards!? Pocock has been the man of the moment at every contest on the floor. What a start he is having.
17m – Argentina have two down injured as Australia pile pressure – but it’s their turn to lose it in contact and Argentina have kicked way down field. Argentina chase hard and they’ve won a penalty against Israel who is blown up for holding onto the ball.
16m – Argentina’s defence is racing up to meet the Wallabies and Australia have played territory with a kick further down. Argentina run it, and lose it again in contact. So many knock-ons in this game thus far.
15m – Throwin will finally take place for the Aussies on the half-way line. Some blood just had to be cleared off of a few faces following some big early hits.
14m – Cordero has attoned for his knock on that lead to the second Aussie try. He’s side stepped Cooper in Argentina’s own 22 and then gained 50m with his clearing kick. If that wont fire Argentina up, I don’t know what will.
12m – The fire and brimstone that we saw from the Argentines hasn’t been completely present so far today. Their forwards have been lethargic and loose-forwards have not been quick enough to the breakdown.
Turnover to the Aussies and they run it back down into Argentine territory before knocking on. Errors starting to mount for both sides.
11m – The kick from Bernard Foley is good too, right from the touchline too! Superb start from a fired-up looking Wallabie side today.
9m – TRY TIME! Argentina is punished straight away with a beautiful Aussie backline move! Adam Ashley-Cooper runs it into the corner for 5.
8m – Another error within their own 22 from Argentina. Mark is called and a quick tap and go is attempted, but knocked on. School-boy stuff from the South Americans thus far.
7m – Penalty Argentina. They would have wanted 7 from this period of pressure, but will walk away happy enough with 3 from Sanchez. It’s now 3-7 to the Wallabies.
6m – Argentina fire back! It’s a beautiful cut through the Australian defence as that in form Argentine backline finally fires. They’re 10m out now.
5m – Aussies all over the game so far, they’re up for this contest.
4m – Too many errors early on from the Argentines, they’re not as fresh today as they were against the Irish at the opening of the quarterfinal game. They’ve knocked on, gotten it back and then lost it at the breakdown. Poor from their loose trio.
3m – Hernandez hangs an absolute monster off of the restart which is knocked on by the Aussies. Time to see if this fearsome Argentina pack can assert early control over the much-improved Aussie pack (which has an Argentine forward coach).
3m – Foley slots the kick. It’s 7 ahead for the Aussies – First blood to them.
2m – TRY TIME! Rob Simmons intercepts and the big lock-forward strides away to score
1m – Aussies get the ball straight back after some fired kicks from each side. They lose it forward as they run it through the hands. Foley is looking fired up for this one.
0m – Kick off! Argentina playing right to left, kick deep to the Wallabies.
BUILDUP: Refresh this article for the latest updates
UPDATE: The anthems are ringing out in Twickenham, we’re closing in on game time!
So it all comes down to this… Australia v Argentina in a Rugby Championship clash to see who will go up against favourites New Zealand, and ultimately, for the Web Ellis Cup.
Australia can count their lucky stars that they were able to scrape past a dogged and hard-fighting Scotland in the quarters, while Argentina tore an injury hit Irish squad apart in some of the finest attacking rugby we’ve arguably seen all tournament.
Who’s it going to be? If I were a betting man, I’d fancy a buffalo on Argentina – I really think they’re worth a shot at taking this one today.
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