SIR CLIVE WOODWARD: Argentina's victory against the odds

SIR CLIVE WOODWARD: Argentina’s historic victory against New Zealand summed up why we all love sport… this was a moment for all fans to treasure

  • Argentina have barely played this season due to the coronavirus crisis
  • But the Pumas stunned the All Blacks for their first-ever win in 30 attempts 
  • Fly-half Nicolas Sanchez scored all of Argentina’s points in a 25-15 victory 

The rugby story of the weekend, probably of the year, was Argentina’s historic first win over the All Blacks after 33 failed attempts since 1976.

Seeing victories against the odds is a big reason we all love sport and this was a moment for all fans to treasure.

The Pumas hadn’t played a Test match for 402 days, their country has been one of the worst affected by Covid and their players were subject to the longest of lockdowns before they could enter a training bubble.

Argentina served up one of the biggest upsets in test rugby history by beating New Zealand

They suffered over a dozen positive tests, self-isolation, moved to another camp in Uruguay and then went into their bubble for three weeks in Australia.

Mario Ledesma’s team flipped that around. It was their love of the jersey that made them give a display to honour it.

The Argentinian union put out some great footage of the guys training at home, including Nicolas Sanchez running around the floor of his apartment block in Paris and Julian Montoya doing his weights on the balcony of his flat in Buenos Aires. One of the scrum-halves took himself down into the dingy car park of his flat block and went through his passing routine using a target on the wall. Inspiring stuff.

So this was a victory for the power of positive thought and a wonderful moment for players who, in many ways, spend their lives battling against the odds.

Argentina won 25-15 to consign the All Blacks to their first back-to-back losses since 2011

Sanchez scores Argentina’s only try as they break their losing streak dating back 35 years




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