It’s a big Tuesday for me, with articles out on three different websites – including Rugby365, in which I ponder the prospect that Argentina might be leading the race for second place in The Rugby Championship this season.
The Rugby Championship already looks New Zealand’s to lose, but even then it would take a series of colossal implosions between now and the final games for that to happen.
But Argentina’s impressive win over South Africa in Salta on the weekend suggests that there might not be a lot between the three other teams in The Rugby Championship, and even that the Pumas are really well placed to topple the Springboks and the Wallabies on the final standings…
The Wallabies – and most of Australia – are still shell-shocked after last weekend’s Bledisloe thumping. What can they do to turn it around in a week? Image: ABC Grandstand
The Roar: Talk about an opening weekend of contrasts. One game an 80-minute battle for supremacy between two surprisingly well-matched sides, and well, whatever you’d like to call Bledisloe 1.
What the opening weekend did tell us was that we probably won’t have to worry about the Rugby Championship 2016 being New Zealand’s to lose. They just won’t.
They’ll quite probably take another bonus point win this weekend in Wellington, and if the return bout between Argentina and South Africa happens to square the ledger, then the All Blacks will suddenly have a massive gap on the table.
The Big Question for week two: nominate the most important aspect Australia and Argentina need to address this week after their losses?
This time of year on The Roar means a international panel of punters discuss a juicy question each week during The Rugby Championship, but this year is extra special.
The 2016 edition of the Big Question is a little different in that I’ve finally completed the SANZAAR set. I’ve had a Kiwi and a South African for some time, and both Digger and Harry are back again, but we’re very pleased to welcome an Argentinean voice to the discussion.
The Big Question for week one: If the 2016 Rugby Championship is New Zealand’s to lose, who of Argentina, Australia, and South Africa is best placed to challenge?
The four RWC semi-finalists come in with very different form lines…
The Roar: Well, I don’t mind admitting I didn’t pick four southern hemisphere Rugby World Cup semi-finalists, but that’s the result we’ve been handed for the 2015 edition.
South Africa will play New Zealand on Saturday, while Argentina will face Australia on Sunday. Both games will be played Twickenham Stadium, as will the Final on October 31.
But what of the form lines of the four sides? Could there be a bigger contrast of how they all got there, and how they’re currently playing?