2010 in review: Jaguars secure ARC crown

(IRB.COM) Saturday 25 December 2010
 
 2010 in review: Jaguars secure ARC crown
Argentina Jaguars' Juan Imhoff scores a try during the ARC 2010 match between Argentina Jaguars and Tonga A in Córdoba, Argentina on 15 October 2010

Argentina Jaguars delighted their supporters in Córdoba to claim the Americas Rugby Championship 2010 with wins over Canada Select XV, USA Select XV and Tonga A, in October this year.

The Jaguars scored 122 points in their three unbeaten matches, conceding only 46. They opened their account on 5 October in front of 3,000 fans at the Estadio Córdoba with a 49-14 victory over Canada Select XV. The crowd had already watched a much closer affair between USA Select XV and Tonga A, with USA Select XV recovering from an 8-3 deficit at half time to claim a 20-15 win.

Match day two saw the Jaguars outclass USA Select XV 45-12, whilst Canada Select XV defeated Tonga A 32-16.

Those results meant that the Jaguars were crowned champions with a match to spare, having already beaten the only team that could match them on points – Canada Select XV.

Drizzle, wind and significantly lower temperatures greeted the teams on the final day and inevitably curtailed the running rugby seen during the first two rounds of the tournament. Canada Select XV adjusted to the difficult conditions better than USA Select XV to win 17-6 and claim second overall.

Tonga A then gave Argentina Jaguars their most difficult match before succumbing 28-20. This meant that Tonga A ended with no tournament points, but this was not a concern for coach Feleti Faotusia after the match against the Jaguars. “We had a good game, the best in this ARC and go home happy at putting together a performance such as this against a very good team.”

Connor Braid ended the tournament as the top points scorer with 28, ahead of two Jaguars - Ignacio Mieres with 22 and Federico Nicolás Sanchez with 20. Jaguars’ Agustín Gosio was the highest try scorer with three.

The Jaguars, along with the other teams participating in the new-look tournament compared to 2009, had one eye on developing potential players through to Rugby World Cup 2011, as well as claiming the title.

“This tournament proved to be a very successful preparation platform for USA, Canada and Tonga in particular as they prepare for their [now completed] November Test programme and in terms of Performance, at the culmination of the tournament.

Results

  05/10/2010 USA Select XV  20 15 Tonga A
  05/10/2010 Argentina Jaguars  49 14 Canada Select XV
  10/10/2010 Canada Select XV  32 16 Tonga A
  10/10/2010 Argentina Jaguars  45 12 USA Select XV
  15/10/2010 Canada Select XV  17 6 USA Select XV
  15/10/2010 Argentina Jaguars  28 20 Tonga A

Final standings

Team Played Won Drawn Lost For Agnst. Tries Bonus Points
Argentina Jaguars 3 3 0 0 122 46 16 2 14
Canada Select XV 3 2 0 1 63 71 7 1 9
USA Select XV 3 1 0 2 38 77 5 0 4
Tonga A 3 0 0 3 51 80 5 1 1