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When the All Blacks Men lose, that becomes the biggest global rugby story of the day, the loss offering a faint sparkle of hope to all future opponents that New Zealand are mortal. Last Saturday, when the Springboks won in Wellington, all rugby eyes were riveted on the match, which overshadowed Argentina’s Down Under upset victory against Australia.
The win marked Los Pumas first win in Australia since 1983, a 35-year, away victory hiatus.
Importantly, Argentina have two wins – a record – in the 2018, annual southern hemisphere Rugby Championship, the other win coming earlier against the Springboks.
For the Wallabies, the result generated notable bad news. First, the crowd in Brisbane numbered only 16,000 in Cbus Super Stadium (27,000 capacity) or a mere 59%. To view the highlights at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rlsev_7Oedo, is to see large swaths of empty seats. The growing disinterest in rugby in Australia (Tied in popularity with Ball Room Dancing) is having a depressing outcome on the players. Also, the loss marked the Wallabies fifth in the past seven Tests and the team dropped to a historic low, a seventh placement in the World Rugby rankings.
Australia trailed 17-14 at the break and were behind 23-19 with one last movement to win the match. Wallaby center Israel Folau broke clean five meters from the try line with his winger unmarked and open for a certain try. But Folau attempted to score himself and coughed up the ball to end the game.
Rugby Championship record to date:
- New Zealand 3-1
- Argentina 2-2
- South Africa 2-2
- Australia 1-3