Mon, Oct 09, 2017 - Page 11 News List

Australia beat Argentina to finish as runners-up

AFP, MENDOZA, Argentina

Australia’s Jack Dempsey escapes Argentina’s defenders on Saturday in Mendoza, Argentina.

Photo: Reuters

Australia on Saturday scored 17 unanswered points in the last quarter of the match to beat Argentina 37-20 in the final game of Rugby Championship.

Scrum-half Will Genia and winger Reece Hodge both scored late tries as the Wallabies pulled away to snuff out any chance of another Argentine comeback after the Pumas had clawed their way back to 20-20.

The result enabled Australia to leapfrog South Africa and finish runner-up to New Zealand in the final championship standings with two wins, two draws and two losses for 15 points.

Argentina finished bottom after losing all six championship matches and failing to secure any bonus points for the first time since joining the southern hemisphere competition in 2012.

Australia triumphed despite a mixed kicking performance from star fly-half Bernard Foley, who came into the match on a streak of 18 successful kicks at goal.

He slotted his first attempt, then fluffed four in a row before regaining his composure and nailing the next four for a 17-point personal tally that included a try.

It lifted his total this season to 80 points, making him the leading individual scorer ahead of New Zealander Beauden Barrett and South African Elton Jantjies.

Foley opened the scoring at the 40,000-capacity Estadio Malvinas Argentinas by slotting a close-range penalty on 15 minutes.

He converted his own try 13 minutes into the second, but the Pumas got back on level terms, with center Santiago Gonzalez Iglesias scoring a converted touchdown.

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