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PREVIEW: Jaguares v Hurricanes

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Friday, March 2, 2018    Lynn McConnell    Getty Images

But at the same time a winless home team will be desperate.

MATCH DETAILS:

Jaguares v Hurricanes, Velez Sarsfield, Buenos Aires, Sunday, March 4, 10.40am (NZT)

Played: 1
Wins: Jaguares 0, Hurricanes 1
Last match: Jaguares 22-40 Hurricanes, April 9, 2016

TALE OF THE TAPE:

Lock Marcos Kremer will start in place of Tomas Lavanini and Javier Ortega Desio will start on the openside flank. Among the substitutes, Juan Martin Hernandez, who missed last week's game while Sebastian Candelliere will replace Ramiro Moyano who suffered a hamstring tear. Only four games have appeared in both games for the Jaguares: Emiliano Boffelli, Bautista Ezcurra, Marias Orlando and captain Pablo Matera. The Hurricanes will be boosted by having Beauden and Jordie Barrett back in their starting XV for the game. Jordie's chance comes after a quicker than expected recovery from shoulder surgery which allowed him to slot in for wing Wes Goosen who has suffered an ankle injury. Ben Lam will play on the wing and Matt Proctor moves to centre from the fullback role he had last week. In the pack Chris Eves starts at prop with Toby Smith out with injury.

HOME TOWN BOOST KEY FOR JAGUARES:

Coach Mario Ledesma said playing at home would be good for the side, especially against a side as good as the 2016 Super Rugby champions. "We feel at home at Velez. It is our stadium, our home, and that gives us an extra lift. The challenge we have for Saturday is to carry out the game plan throughout the 80 minutes, just at times. If we can do that, the results will come," he said. Surprisingly, scrummaging has been an issue for the Jaguares. In their first two games of the season they have lost six scrums, that is twice as many as they had lost in their last seven games.

MOBILITY WILL BE ASSET:

The Hurricanes pack might not be the biggest unit in the competition, especially against a big pack like the Jaguares will field, but it will be one of the more mobile combinations. Leg speed issues were a concern for the Hurricanes in the last 10 minutes at altitude last week but that shouldn't be a factor in Buenos Aires. Locks Sam Lousi and Vaea Fifita are more than comfortable with the ball in hand and acres to run in while front rowers Ricky Riccitelli and Chris Eves can be quick in support. And in the loose Ardie Savea, Brad Shields and Gareth Evans are all fluid players who should provide plenty of tests for the home team. While the attention will naturally fall on the Barrett brothers, that may make life a little easier for the midfield men Ngani Laumape and Matt Proctor. If that proves the case they could cut some merry capers.

FAST FACT:

The Jaguares have lost their last three games on home turf – their longest losing streak at home. (OPTA)

TEAMS:

Jaguares:

1.Felipe Arregui, 2.Agustin Creevy, 3.Nahuel Tetaz Chaparro, 4.Marcos Kremer, 5.Matias Alemanno, 6.Pablo Matera (captain), 7.Javier Ortega Desio, 8.Tomas Lezana, 9.Gonzalo Bertranou, 10.Nicolas Sanchez, 11.Emiliano Boffelli, 12.Bautista Ezcurra, 13.Matias Orlando, 14.Bautista Delguy, 15.Joaquin Tuculet.

Substitutes: 16.Julian Montoya, 17.Javier Diaz, 18.Juan Pablo Zeiss, 19.Guido Petti, 20.Juan Manuel Leguizamon, 21.Martin Landajo, 22.Juan Martin Hernandez, 23.Sebastian Candelliere.

Hurricanes:

1.Chris Eves, 2.Ricky Riccitelli, 3.Ben May, 4.Vaea Fifita, 5.Sam Lousi, 6.Brad Shields (captain), 7.Ardie Savea, 8.Gareth Evans, 9.TJ Perenara, 10.Beauden Barrett, 11.Ben Lam, 12.Ngani Laumape, 13.Matt Proctor, 14.Julian Savea, 15.Jordie Barrett.

Substitutes: 16.James O'Reilly, 17.Fraser Armstrong, 18.Alex Fidow, 19.Michael Fatialofa, 20.Blade Thomson, 21.Jamie Booth, 22.Jackson Garden-Bachop, 23.Vince Aso.