Defending Champions New Zealand’s All Blacks make a historic debut at the Trafalgar Park, Nelson when they play host to Argentina’s Pumas in 2018’s Rugby Championship’s 3rd round game. The stage is set for this Saturday encounter which will kick off at 7:35 pm NZST (UTC +12). All Blacks and Pumas face each other twice with the return test match being set for the 29th of Sep. in Buenos Aires. Here we come up with the All Blacks vs Argentina Rugby Championship Game Preview, prediction, line-up, key players, fixtures etc.

All Blacks vs Los Pumas TRC Round 3 Game Schedule

All Blacks Rugby’s this season’s TRC’s showdown has so far been successful since they have defeated Australia in round 1 and round 2 as well that also considered as the Bledisloe Cup. On the contrary, The Argentinian will face the unbeaten All Blacks with securing a win and loss in round one and two. Let’s have a look at one of the most hyped game schedule.

  • What: All Blacks(New Zealand) vs Los Pumas(Argentina) TRC round 3 game
  • When: Saturday, 8th September 2018
  • Kickoff: 19:35 (Local), 07:35 (GMT), 4:35 (ARGT)
  • Where: Trafalgar Park, Nelson, New Zealand
  • Referee: Pascal Gaüzère (France)
  • Assistant Referees: Nigel Owens (Wales), Nic Berry (Australia)
  • TMO (Television Match Official): Rowan Kitt (England)
  • TV Live Stream: Abs vs Pumas Live

Argentina and All Blacks Rugby Championship 2018 So far

All Blacks will lock horns with the Pumas with both teams having enjoyed mixed fortunes so far in this 7th edition Southern Hemisphere’s battle for supremacy.

New Zealand has won all the two test matches with the most recent and noteworthy being an emphatic 40-12 win over the Wallabies at their favorite Eden Park Stadium. The win over Australia meant that the All Blacks successfully retained the Bledisloe Cup.

Pumas, on the other hand, come into this match off an impressive comeback 32-19 win over the Springboks. Argentina lost their opening test match in this year’s edition against the very Springboks only to pull an ecstatic win in their 2nd round meeting.

Are there any changes have been made on both sides?

Yes, a couple of changes have been made by the coaches of both sides as per as their own strategy.

“Loosehead Joe Moody has been ruled out for at least 6 weeks due to a thumb injury which effectively rules him out of the remaining 4 test matches for the All Blacks”. This means that fellow All Blacks prop Karl Tu’inukuafe will provide cover with Angus Ta’avao earning a call-up as a replacement.

Another major talking point is the effectiveness of head coach Steve Hansen’s counter-attacking strategy which the All Blacks have fully embraced making them very lethal on and off the ball.

Meanwhile, Argentina will have the opportunity to show whether there is any sort of improvement when they face the mighty All Blacks with guidance by their new coach, Mario Ledesma.

Garston Cortes is the player that has earned a callup prior to this matchup for Argentina.

Argentina Rugby Line Up For TRC Round 3 Game

Forwards: Agustin Creevy (capt), Gaston Cortes, Santiago Garcia Botta, Matias Alemanno, S. Medrano, Guido Petti, Diego Fortuny, Pablo Matera, J.M. Leguizamon,T. Lavanini, Javier Ortega Desio, Marcos Kremer, Pablo Matera, T. Lavanini, Tomas Lezana, J. Montonya, Nahuel T. Chaparro, J.P. Zeiss.

Backs: Nicolas Sanchez, G. Bertranou, Matias Orlando, Emiliano Bofelli, R. Moyano, Tomas Cubelli, Matias Moroni, Bautista Delguy, Jeronimo de la Fuente, Juan Cruz Mallia, B. Ezcurra, Martin Landajo, Alvarez S. Fourcade, Gonzalez S. Iglesias.

All Blacks Rugby Line Up vs Los Pumas

Forwards: Luke Whitelock, Liam Squire, Ardie Saves, (c) Kieran Read, Jackson Hemopo, Shannon Frizell, Sam Kane, Sam Whitelock, Brodie Retallic, Scott Barrett, Tim Perry, Karl Tu’inukuafe, Owens Franks, Codie Taylor, Ofa Tuungafasi, Nathan Harris, Dane Coles.

Backs: Ben Smith, Waisake Naholo, Nehe Milner-Skudder, Rieko Loane, Aaron Smith, Anton Lienert-Brown, Jordie Barrett, Jack Goodhue, Sonny Williams, TJ Peranara, Ryan Crotty, Richie Mo’unga, Damian McKenzie, Beauden Barrett, Te Toiroa Tahuriorangi.

Argentina Rugby vs All Blacks Head to Head

The All Blacks have won 6 of the previous 6 games. On the other hand, Pumas have won 1 of 5 matches played in 2018. New Zealand has won 25/26 previous meetings with Argentina, with the other match ending in a draw. The All Blacks have won 14/14 vs Argentina when at home.

Team Comparison

Here in All Blacks vs Argentina Rugby Championship Game Preview, it needs to compare both sides to figure out the strength of them.

New Zealand All Blacks Rugby:


  • Tries – 12
  • Points – 78
  • Carries- 315
  • Meters – 1,479
  • Clean Breaks – 45
  • Defenders Beaten – 80
  • Offloads – 27
  • Passes- 454

Defense & Discipline

  • Tackles – 271
  • Missed Tackles – 44
  • Tackles won – 86%
  • Turnovers Conceded – 40

Argentina Los Pumas Rugby:


  • Tries – 7
  • Points – 53
  • Carries- 233
  • Meters – 841
  • Clean Breaks – 30
  • Defenders Beaten – 50
  • Offloads – 14
  • Passes – 259

Defense & Discipline

  • Tackles – 322
  • Missed Tackles – 59
  • Tackles won – 85%
  • Turnovers Conceded – 25

All Blacks vs Argentina Rugby Championship Game Preview, Prediction

Argentina Los Pumas Rugby has all-time horrible result in their last 26 meetings against the All Blacks. All Blacks, have won both home and away games in the last overall clashes except one draw in 1985 at Buenos Aires.

Though the newly appointed head coach of Pumas side Mario Ledesma hope to manage a win this time, it’s quite difficult against the defending champs to do that. So, the prediction is All Blacks Win by 14+ points and the score will be 41-15.

Match Reports