Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Canadian Men Face Stiff Argentine Test in Americas Rugby Championship

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Canadian Men Face Stiff Argentine Test in Americas Rugby Championship

Article excerpt

Canada rugby team faces stiff Argentine test

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TORONTO - After blanking Chile 56-0 for its first win of the Americas Rugby Championship, Canada has reached the business end of the competition with games against Argentina XV and the U.S.

The two teams have won a combined five of six games while Canada is 1-2-0.

First up are the Argentines, who meet the 21st-ranked Canadian men Friday at Westhills Stadium in Langford, B.C.

The game is not considered a test match because Argentina is fielding a developmental team rather that its top side, which is ranked 10th in the world. Still, the South Americans are 3-0-0 after dispatching No. 26 Brazil 54-3, the 13th-ranked U.S. 45-14 and No. 17 Uruguay 35-10.

"They're smart. They've got a lot of good players, good individuals and well-coached," Canada coach Kingsley Jones said of the Argentines. "They'll be a big challenge ... It's a high-level team."

Jones expects the full Argentina side to make some noise at the World Cup later this year in Japan.

"If I was a betting man -- I'm not allowed to, of course -- I fancy Argentina to surprise a few people in the World Cup," he said.

Canada, which is missing most of its top overseas pros, lost 20-17 in Uruguay and 18-10 in Brazil before thumping Chile last Friday in Langford. Wingers Andrew Coe and Kainoa Lloyd combined for five tries against Chile.

Another plus is the fact that Canada has not conceded a try in the last two games,

The Argentina side had a long trip to the West Coast, arriving at 1 a.m. earlier in the week.

"The hardest thing in this competition is the travel, there's no doubt about it," said Jones. "To travel 28 hours in a competition on a plane is madness, really. They just travelled Chile-Toronto-Victoria ... It's a tough one.

"If it was you and (you're) coming here for a weekend for a wedding, we'd be tired ... Let's see how Argentina travel. Certainly it will give us a small advantage. It's not going to win us the game, that's for sure."

Jones has made three changes to his starting roster. …

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