Jaguares destroy Brumbies to reach first Super Rugby Final
SUPER RUGBY SPOTLIGHT: The Jaguares reached their first-ever Super Rugby Final after they destroyed the Brumbies 39-7 in their semifinal in Buenos Aires on Friday.
The Argentinians outscored their opponents by five tries to one in what was a convincing display from start to finish.
Gonzalo Quesada’s side raced to a 20-0 lead after 20 minutes and the Brumbies just never recovered after that. The visitors’ only points of the game came via a try from Folau Fainga’a and a conversion from Christian Lealiifano, who played his last match for the Brumbies.
The Jaguares will meet the winner of the other semifinal between the Crusaders and the Hurricanes in Christchurch.
If the Crusaders win the Jaguares will travel to Christchurch, but if the Hurricanes win the Final will be played in Buenos Aires.
The Jaguares opened the scoring in the fourth minute after a mistake by the Brumbies’ in their own 22.
Brumbies’ No.6 Rob Valetini and wing Toni Pulu got in each other’s way trying to field a Jaguares’ chip kick resulting in a loose ball in the visitors’ 22. That ball was then picked up neatly by scrumhalf Tomas Cubelli who dived over for the game’s first try.
Joaquin Diaz Bonilla added the extra two points with the conversion.
The Jaguares were further in front four minutes later when Diaz Bonilla converted a penalty inside the Brumbies’ half.
The Brumbies were struggling to get into the game, and they were punished again for their indiscipline when Diaz Bonilla added another three points in the 14th minute.
Things got worse for the visitors in the 19th minute when Jaguares lock Tomas Lavanini crashed over for his team’s second try after sustained pressure inside the Brumbies’ half. Diaz Bonilla was successful with the conversion.
However, the home side failed to add to their tally in the second 20 minutes of the first half and it was the Brumbies who had the final say with hooker Folau Fainga’a scoring his 12th try of the tournament in the last play of the half.
Christian Lealiifano was successful with the conversion and at half-time, it was 20-7 in favour of the home side.
The Brumbies seemed to be more competitive during the early stages of the second half, but it was another mistake which allowed the Jaguares to open the scoring.
Lealiifano butchered a grubber kick which allowed Matias Moroni to pick up the ball and sprint downfield before sending a neat inside pass to Matias Orlando who ran in for his team’s third try in the 49th minute, which was converted by Diaz Bonilla.
Orlando completed his double in the 62nd minute when he exposed some poor defending from the Brumbies to run in for his team’s fourth try.
Diaz Bonilla added another two points and the Jaguares were 27 points in front with 17 minutes still left on the clock.
Fullback Emiliano Boffelli was the man wrap things up with an excellent try in the 78th minute and start the celebrations for the Argentinians.
Man of the match: Matias Orlando deserves a mention for his two tries. The Jaguares’ forwards were outstanding in open play and gave the Brumbies plenty of problems. However, the award is shared between halfbacks Joaquin Diaz Bonilla and Tomas Cubelli. The duo controlled play excellently and made good decisions.
Tries: Cubelli, Lavanini, Orlando 2, Boffelli
Cons: Diaz Bonilla 4
Pens: Diaz Bonilla 2
Jaguares: 15 Emiliano Boffelli, 14 Sebastián Cancelliere, 13 Matias Orlando, 12 Jeronimo de la Fuente (captain), 11 Matias Moroni, 10 Joaquin Diaz Bonilla, 9 Tomas Cubelli, 8 Javier Ortega Desio, 7 Tomas Lezana, 6 Pablo Matera, 5 Tomas Lavanini, 4 Guido Petti, 3 Santiago Medrano, 2 Agustin Creevy, 1 Mayco Vivas.
Replacements: 16 Julian Montoya, 17 Nahuel Tetaz Chaparro, 18 Enrique Pieretto, 19 Marcos Kremer, 20 Francisco Gorrissen, 21 Felipe Ezcurra, 21 Domingo Miotti, 22 Santiago Carreras.
Brumbies: 15 Tom Banks, 14 Henry Speight, 13 Tevita Kuridrani, 12 Irae Simone, 11 Toni Pulu, 10 Christian Lealiifano (captain), 9 Joe Powell, 8 Lachlan Mccaffrey, 7 Tom Cusack, 6 Rob Valetini, 5 Sam Carter, 4 Rory Arnold, 3 Allan Alaalatoa, 2 Folau Fainga’a, 1 Scott Sio.
Replacements: 16 Connal Mcinerney, 17 James Slipper, 18 Leslie Leuluaialii-Makin, 19 Darcy Swain, 20 Murray Douglas, 21 Jahrome Brown, 22 Matt Lucas, 23 Tom Wright.
Referee: Mike Fraser (New Zealand)
Assistant referees: Glen Jackson (New Zealand), Federico Anselmi (Argentina)_
TMO: Santiago Borsani (Argentina)