Twice world champions miss out on chance to top group after failing to get a bonus point in their Rugby World Cup game.
Argentina shook off first-half nerves and played the attacking game they enjoy to overwhelm Georgia 54-9 in their Pool C match on of the Rugby Wprld Cup, coach Daniel Hourcade and captain Agustin Creevy said.
The score was 14-9 to the Pumas at halftime after they had scored an early try in an even first half before a one-sided second half in which Argentina added another six tries, with two each from wings Juan Imhoff and Santiago Cordero.
“I’m obviously very happy with a victory playing good rugby in a match that opened up after a difficult first half,” Hourcade told reporters after his side’s first win of the tournament in Gloucester on Friday.
“We committed a lot of faults in the first half that prevented us from playing our game, so at halftime we urged ourselves to go out there and shake off the pressure and do what we know best.”
“We played with confidence and enjoyed ourselves, that’s why the score was so big,” said hooker Creevy, who added he was impressed by the Argentine support in the crowd at Kingsholm and likened the atmosphere to that at a football match.
Creevy admitted the sin binning of Georgia’s talismanic captain Mamuka Gorgodze early in the second half had helped Argentina take off.
“Obviously, with a man less, and on top of that their captain, it was a tough loss for them and we took advantage, but we were already playing with confidence then,” he said.
Hourcade has since taking charge two years ago given the Pumas greater confidence to express themselves in attack with Gorgodze saying this Argentina team is better than the one that beat Georgia 25-7 at the 2011 tournament in New Zealand.
“This team has always tried to do what we practice, to get quick ball from the contact areas and it’s really gratifying to see it on the pitch,” Hourcade said.
The coach said centre Juan Martin Hernandez, Argentina’s main kicker with ball in hand who came off after 36 minutes, and flyhalf Nicolas Sanchez, who was replaced in the 65th, had minor muscle injuries that were not serious.
Argentina, who played only five days after their opening 26-16 loss to holders New Zealand, now have a longer break until their next match on October 4 in Leicester against Tonga, who were upset 17-10 by the Georgians last Saturday.