Hello everybody and welcome to live coverage of Argentina v Australia from Cbus Super Stadium on the Gold Coast. It’s the final round of this year’s Rugby Championship and kick-off is at 5.05pm AEST.
It’s been a funny old week in the Rugby Championship. Last weekend Australia made it a hat-trick of wins on the bounce for the first time in four years, against a toothless Argentina outfit.
But afterwards Pumas coach Mario Ledesma gave SANZAAR what for after nobody from the Albiceleste was represented at a competition photoshoot. “The boys and staff felt really disrespected,” Ledesma grumbled. “We’re not asking for much.”
Relationships deteriorated further when a group of Argentina’s tour party were denied reentry to Queensland after taking an unauthorised trip to Byron Bay – or as the Queensland government would view it, Covid-central. Six players and two staff – Sebastián Cancelliere, Joaquín Díaz Bonilla, Felipe Ezcurra, Pablo Matera, Santiago Medrano and Santiago Socino, along with manager Lucas Chioccarelli and video analyst Rodrigo Martínez – are now banned from tonight’s clash.
But the show must go on, so despite a week of acrimony and disruption, Argentina and Australia will complete their Rugby Championship schedule.