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Scotland confirm three-test summer tour to Argentina and hoping for a date with Chile

Scotland last played in Argentina in Resistencia in 2018.
Scotland last played in Argentina in Resistencia in 2018.

 

Scotland will play three tests in Argentina this summer with the possibility of a fourth against the rising World Cup hopefuls Chile in Santiago.

Negotiations to take on the Chileans – who knocked Canada out of qualifying for next year’s World Cup in France – are ongoing. But three tests against the Pumas will be played on successive weeks in July, at three new regional locations.

First two tests at 1200m altitude

It will be the first three-test tour by any Tier One nation to Argentina. All three games are in North Western provinces of the country. The first two tests on July 2 and 9, will be played in Juyuy province in the shadow of the Andes, some 1200m above sea level.

The first test is at the Estadio 23 de Agosto at San Salvador de Juyuy, the second in the city of Salta at the Estadio Padre Ernesto Martearena.

The final test will take place on July 19 further south in the city of Santiago Del Estero at the Estadio Único Madre de Ciudades. All matches will kick-off at 8.10pm (UK time) and shown live on Sky Sports.

Scotland last played in Argentina in 2018, winning 44-15 in Resistencia as part of their North and South American tour that summer.

‘Building togetherness’

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Head coach Gregor Townsend said the tour, the first for two years due to Covid, was a huge opportunity.

“Our players can improve, build togetherness and represent their country once again,” he said. “With the World Cup now less than 16 months away, it will help our players gain more game time and experience ahead of next season.

“This Test Series will be a tough challenge. Argentina are a proud rugby nation with a strong home record.

“They will provide our forwards with a real test. But they also play a really open style of rugby under (former Australia and Leinster coach) Michael Chieka.

“When you see the quality of Argentinian players that are currently playing in Europe, they have ability right across their squad.”

Lions to be rested?

Townsend has previously hinted he might split squads for the summer tour. It’s likely that players who have endured a recent heavy schedule may be rested.

Those who toured last summer with the British and Irish Lions may be excused the trip. That would Stuart Hogg, captain since 2020, and key men Finn Russell and Hamish Watson.

“This is an opportunity for us to see our players in a touring environment,” continued Townsend. “It’s what we’ll experience at the Rugby World Cup when we’ll be together for at least a month.

“We will be able to see how the players gel as a group and perform when they’re away from home. It’ll really help us with our World Cup squad selections. It’ll also give us things to work on that we’ve identified this season.”

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