Rugby / Championship / Pumas scent Wallabies upset in Genia's absence
The Pumas have been impressive in their draw with South Africa and the defeat to New Zealand in their last two games.
SYDNEY - Argentina already had grounds for confidence heading into their Rugby Championship test against Australia on the Gold Coast this weekend, and the absence of Wallabies scrumhalf Will Genia has given them some more.
The Pumas have been impressive in their draw with South Africa and the defeat to New Zealand in their last two games, while Australia were humbled twice by the All Blacks before last week's scrappy 26-19 win over the Springboks.
Genia will be sidelined for six months after undergoing knee reconstruction on Wednesday, and is the third Australia captain this season to be ruled out of the inaugural four-team southern hemisphere championship by injury.
"I think he's been a talisman for them," Argentina prop Marcos Ayerza told reporters this week. "To lose a key player ... and a captain ... is a massive loss for Australia and hopefully we can use that to our advantage."
Genia will be replaced at halfback by Nick Phipps for tomorrow's match at Skilled Park and as skipper by lock Nathan Sharpe, who will lead his country in what will be his 109th test and the first to be played in his home town.
The 34-year-old Sharpe, who will retire at the end of this season, is the only Australian player to have previously played the Pumas.