The planned tour of Argentina this summer by Guinness Six Nations champions Wales looks set to be called off – but they are still hopeful of facing the Pumas. Two Test games are scheduled in Argentina, but strict UK government travel restrictions due to the coronavirus pandemic are currently in place.

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Talks are ongoing between Welsh Rugby Union chiefs and their counterparts in Argentina, with a possibility of the Pumas travelling to Wales instead being mooted. “I cannot see us travelling to Argentina,” said WRU chief executive Steve Phillips on Wednesday, the same day it emerged that Wales will begin their Guinness Six Nations title defence in 2022 in Ireland.

“It is a red (list) country, which means the players coming back would be faced by a hard quarantine where you live in a Heathrow hotel for ten days. It would be pretty tough going on the back-end of a long season, and you then butt into player welfare, player rest and the start of next season.

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“So we will be speaking to Argentina and asking if they would like to come to Wales. We would be happy to host them and contribute towards their costs. The way that the World Rugby schedule works is it is our obligation to go to Argentina, it is their home match and income.

“We will try and put Argentina back in the position they were in as if they were playing at home. The fundamental thing is we desperately want to play two or three Test matches this July because we lost the tour to New Zealand this time last year.

“World Rugby are very supportive, and it’s about trying to come to an arrangement where everybody ends up in a place that they are comfortable with.”

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The USA, Canada and Japan are also possible summer opponents for Wayne Pivac’s reigning Six Nations champions.

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