'Huge heart in the face of adversity' - Hourcade lauds last-gasp Pumas


Daniel Hourcade lauded the heart shown by Argentina in securing a late 26-24 win over South Africa in their Rugby Championship match in Salta on Saturday.

The Pumas let slip a 10-point lead in the closing stages of their first meeting with the Springboks at the Mbombela Stadium one week prior, going down 30-23.

However, the South American side made amends in the return match, with Santiago Gonzalez Iglesias' 78th-minute penalty snatching their first victory of the campaign.

Head coach Hourcade was delighted by the spirit on show from the Pumas, especially after they were forced to make a number of changes in the second period - Juan Martin Hernandez left the field on a stretcher following a clash of heads with Oupa Mohoje.

"We played a fantastic first half, we took an advantage that was not real compared to what was seen on the pitch," said Hourcade.

"In the second half they came at us, we started to have problems with injuries, we had to make positional changes with Cumpa [Ramiro Herrera], Marta [Martin] Landajo and Javier Ortega.

"The truth is that this team showed huge heart in the face of adversity today.

"I'm happy because I think we did enough to deserve the victory. We played better than the Sprinboks and did very good things on the pitch."

Juan Manuel Leguizamon earned his 70th Test cap in the match in Salta and he revelled in the result.

"The team bet on their character, personality and the desire to go and find the game with what we had set ourselves, so it is doubly satisfying," he added. "I take my hat off for everything that the team did."