BUENOSAIRES (Reuters) – Argentina have made two changes in their backline for Saturday’s game against Australia, with Matias Orlando gaining a rare start at centre and Ramiro Moyano returning on the wing, the Argentine Rugby Union said on Thursday.
Orlando replaces Bautista Ezcurra for his first start of the 2018 Rugby Championship, with Jeronimo De La Fuente donning the No. 12 shirt alongside him.
Moyano, who missed the 35-17 loss to New Zealand last weekend with a rib injury, replaces Bautista Delguy who is out with a damaged shoulder.
Prop forward Santiago Garcia Botta and experienced flyhalf Santiago Gonzalez Iglesias are included among the replacements.
Argentina are three points ahead of Australia, who have won only one of their five matches in the competition this season and were surprisingly beaten 23-19 by the South Americans when the teams met in Queensland last month.
A win or a draw for the Pumas would guarantee them their best ever position in the Rugby Championship since they joined the tournament in 2012.
New Zealand won the title for the third year in a row last weekend.
Team: 1-Nahuel Tetaz Chaparro, 2-Agustin Creevy, 3-Ramiro Herrera, 4-Guido Petti, 5-Tomas Lavanini, 6-Pablo Matera, 7-Marcos Kremer, 8-Javier Ortega Desio, 9-Gonzalo Bertranou, 10-Nicolas Sánchez, 11-Ramiro Moyano, 12-Jeronimo De la Fuente, 13-Matías Orlando, 14-Matias Moroni, 15-Emiliano Boffelli.
Replacements: 16-Julian Montoya, 17-Santiago Garcia Botta, 18-Santiago Medrano, 19-Matias Alemanno, 20-Juan Manuel Leguizamon, 21-Tomas Cubelli, 22-Santiago Gonzalez Iglesias, 23-Sebastian Cancelliere.
(Writing by Andrew Downie)