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Argentina name experienced pack to take on England

By Josh Raisey
Julian Montoya (Photo by David Rogers/Getty Images)

Argentina head coach Michael Cheika has named a starting pack which averages 60 caps to take on England on Saturday in Marseille, with a centurion on the bench in the form of Agustin Creevy.

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The 89-cap Julian Montoya captains Los Pumas, and he is joined by four other players in the pack with 50 caps or more, with flanker Pablo Matera boasting the most with 95. England head coach Steve Borthwick has named an equally experienced pack, with both Dan Cole and Courtney Lawes having over 100 caps.

The backline is slightly less experienced, with only scrumhalf Gonzalo Bertranou and Emiliano Boffelli having more than 50 caps, with both having 53 apiece.

Both sides will be acutely aware that the winners of that match will have one foot in the door of the quarter-finals, and in a very good position to top the pool.

Cheika said after naming his squad: (Translated on Google) “I am happy with how we are prepared for this first match. Choosing the team was difficult, because the 33 players who are available are in very good condition, they have done a good job. We know that beyond the game, preparation is the most important thing, and we arrived well.”

Montoya added: “We are calm, with logical anxiety in these circumstances, but knowing that we made good preparation. We have been preparing for this first game for a long time, and that allows us to stay focused on the present.”

Argentina XV
1. GALLO, Thomas (17 caps)
2. MONTOYA, Julian (captain; 89 caps)
3. GÓMEZ KODELA, Francisco (31 caps; no RWC tests)
4. ALEMANNO, Matías (87 caps; 10 tests in RWC)
5. LAVANINI, Tomás (82 caps; 9 tests at RWC)
6. MATERA, Pablo (95 caps; 10 tests at RWC)
7. KREMER, Marcos (57 caps; 4 RWC tests)
8. GONZÁLEZ, Juan Martín (24 caps; no RWC tests)
9. BERTRANOU, Gonzalo (53 caps; 1 RWC test)
10. CARRERAS, Santiago (35 caps; 4 tests at RWC)
11. CARRERAS, Mateo (11 caps; no RWC tests)
12. CHOCOBARES, Santiago (14 caps; no RWC tests)
13. CINTI, Lucio (16 caps; no RWC tests)
14. BOFFELLI, Emiliano (53 caps; 3 RWC tests)
15. MALLÍA, Juan Cruz (26 caps; 1 test in RWC)

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Replacements
16. CREEVY, Agustín (101 caps; 15 tests at RWC)
17. SCLAVI, Joel (12 caps; no RWC tests)
18. BELLO, Eduardo (14 caps; no RWC tests)
19. PETTI, Guido (75 caps; 10 tests at RWC)
20. RUBIOLO, Pedro (5 caps; no RWC tests)
21. BRUNI, Rodrigo (21 caps; 1 RWC test)
22. BAZÁN VÉLEZ, Lautaro (7 caps; no RWC tests)
23. MORONI, Matías (74 caps; 8 tests at RWC)

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