Don’t expect Mario Ledesma to resort to any “old school” cries for redemption when Argentina face the Wallabies in Brisbane on Saturday.
The visiting coach says that doesn’t work these days, even following Australia’s record second-half comeback to beat the Pumas in Salta last year.
“We old-school boys used to feed a lot from that kind of thing but this generation, it just doesn’t work, they need a logical explanation,” he said.
So what is the logical explanation behind the Wallabies’ revival from 31-7 down at half-time to win the South American thriller 45-34?
“I dunno; you tell me,” said Ledesma, who was an assistant to Michael Cheika at the Wallabies and NSW Waratahs before taking the Pumas job.
“If I knew I’d be solving the national debt, solving a lot of problems … us as coaches sometimes we just don’t have the answers.
“I would ask the same to Cheik of the first 40 minutes and he wouldn’t know … but obviously it was a bad memory.”
It’s two different-looking teams that will face off at Suncorp Stadium as both sides make the most of their limited opportunities before the World Cup.
Argentina have embraced the week, basing themselves in Sydney as they will again for almost two weeks in the lead-up to Japan’s showpiece in September.
While they’d love a win to snap a run of six-straight Test losses, Ledesma admitted his true focus was getting his house in order to perform in Japan.
Meanwhile, Christian Lealiifano’s return to the international arena after a three-year period that included a battle with blood cancer is the host’s feel good story as Cheika takes the chance to assess his Cup candidates.
Ledesma appreciates the storyline but says he hasn’t spent the week decoding what the Brumbies’ captain and a new-look Australian backline might bring.
“It’s been a helluva story,” the Argentine said of Lealiifano.
“If we go back a couple of years no one would even imagine he’d be playing rugby again and now he’s playing for the Wallabies.
“It’s great to see him out there; I hope he plays well and he loses.”
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