Electric Argentina win bronze final 34-10
PARIS, 19 October - A thrilling bronze final contest saw Argentina complete an IRB Rugby World Cup double over France, following their opening day victory with a 34-10 win at Parc des Princes.
It was Argentina's biggest Test win against the French.
Twelve minutes into the second half, Argentina scored a contender for try of the tournament. Ignacio Corleto skimmed through the French defence on the left, offloading to Manuel Contepomi who spread it right. Two huge passes later it reached wing Federico Martin Aramburu who dived over in the corner. Felipe Contepomi couldn't cap the score with two points, skewing the conversion wide.
With France under the cosh at 22-3, the entrance of second row Sébastien Chabal saw Argentina go down to 14 men. Juan Manuel Leguizamón clattered Chabal with a bodycheck that was both late and deemed dangerous by the referee.
It mattered not for Los Pumas. After Argentina turned over a France attack, Corleto took a pass from Horacio Agulla to hare near the length of the pitch to score in the corner and put the match out of the hosts' reach. With Felipe Contepomi missing from the touchline, Argentina led 27-3.
France restored some pride with 12 minutes to go, the lively Clément Poitrenaud selling his marker a dummy before jinking through to dink the ball down following powerful running from Imanol Harinordoquy and Chabal. Replacement Lionel Beauxis scored the conversion to make it 27-10.
Then with four minutes to go, Felipe Contepomi scored his second try to break French hearts, before kicking the conversion.
In the first half, the teams exchanged penalties before the Pumas scored two tries to lead France 17-3. Felipe Contepomi crashed down in the corner and converted to make it 10-3 before prop Omar Hasan Jalil forced the ball through a mass of bodies under the posts. Felipe Contepomi's conversion was routine, 17-3 to Argentina.
As the French besieged the Argentina line to no reward, France captain Raphael Ibanez and Pumas second row Rimas Alvarez Kairelis saw yellow for foul play in the final seconds of the half.