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奥运新闻

UPDATE 1-Rugby-Argentina hand debut to Olympic medallist Mendy v Boks

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Aug 19 (Reuters) - Argentina have named uncapped wing Ignacio Mendy in their side to face South Africa in the Rugby Championship on Saturday, one of six changes to the starting side that lost 32-12 to the Springboks last weekend.

Mendy, 21, who was part of the Argentina team that won a bronze medal in Rugby Sevens at the Tokyo Olympics, will make his debut against the world champions, with uncapped team mate Lucio Cinti, also an Olympic medallist, on the bench.

Domingo Miotti takes over from Nicolas Sanchez at flyhalf, while Gonzalo Bertranou is in at scrumhalf for Felipe Ezcurra in a new half-back pairing.

Santiago Chocobares and Jeronimo De La Fuente have been retained as the centres, with Santiago Carreras moving from full-back to the wing to accommodate Juan Cruz Mallia in the number 15 jersey.

Coach Mario Ledesma hopes the backline changes will help put the Springbok defence, which has conceded only four tries in their last 10 tests, under more pressure.

“We didn’t execute well last weekend because we were under pressure from the South African defence and I was not happy with that. But I think we can do things better if we implement what we train in the week,” Ledesma told reporters.

The front row of the scrum remains the same with Francisco Gomez Kodela and Nahuel Tetaz Chaparro as the props alongside hooker Julian Montoya, who captains the side.

There is a new lock pairing of Tomas Lavanini and Matias Alemanno, with Guido Petti moving from the second row to the number seven jersey. Pablo Matera and Rodrigo Bruni make up the back row.

Team: 15-Juan Cruz Mallia, 14-Ignacio Mendy, 13-Santiago Chocobares, 12-Jeronimo De La Fuente, 11-Santiago Carreras, 10-Domingo Miotti, 9-Gonzalo Bertranou, 8-Rodrigo Bruni, 7-Guido Petti, 6-Pablo Matera, 5-Tomas Lavanini, 4-Matias Alemanno, 3-Francisco Gomez Kodela, 2-Julian Montoya (captain), 1-Nahuel Tetaz Chaparro

Replacements: 16-Facundo Bosch, 17-Facundo Gigena, 18-Santiago Medrano, 19-Marcos Kremer, 20-Juan Martin Gonzalez, 21-Felipe Ezcurra, 22-Nicolas Sanchez, 23-Lucio Cinti.

Reporting by Nick Said; Editing by Ken Ferris and Toby Davis

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