June 9, 2018 / 10:28 PM / 10 months ago

Rugby - Understrength Wales ease past static Argentina

BUENOS AIRES (Reuters) - Wales got their short South American tour off to the perfect start on Saturday when their understrength side easily beat a lacklustre Argentina team 23-10.

Rugby Union - June Internationals - Argentina v Wales - San Juan del Bicentenario Stadium, San Juan, Argentina - June 9, 2018 - Wales' James Davies and Argentina's Gonzalo Bertranou in action. REUTERS/Diego Lima

The win in San Juan was Wales’s 12th triumph in 17 encounters with the Argentines and their fourth win in a row following victories over South Africa, France and Italy.

It also prevented a southern hemisphere clean sweep on the first day of the June internationals.

New Zealand recovered from a first-half deficit to overwhelm France, Australia ended Ireland’s winning run and South Africa produced a remarkable comeback to hand England a fourth straight defeat. Japan beat Italy in the day’s other tier one clash.

Wales came to the southern hemisphere without captain Sam Warburton and regulars Liam Willians, Leigh Halfpenny, Dan Biggar and Toby Faletau.

However their replacements in a young side were commanding against a static Pumas team, especially in the first half.

Although Argentina took an early lead through a Nicolas Sanchez penalty, tries from James Davies and George North, combined with two conversions and a penalty from Rhys Patchell, helped Wales to go in 17-3 up at the break.

Patchell added another penalty before the home side came back into the game in the last quarter, with a try from Tomas Lezan and a conversion from Santiago Gonzalez Iglesias.

However, Gareth Anscombe added a final penalty for Wales to round out the scoring.

The two sides meet again next Saturday in Santa Fe.

Reporting by Ramiro Scandolo, writing by Andrew Downie; Editing by Clare Fallon

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