Australian Michael Cheika’s tenure as Argentina coach got off to a perfect start on Saturday as the Pumas beat Scotland 26-18 in San Salvador de Jujuy, their first home match in almost three years. Tries from Jeronimo de la Fuente and replacement Santiago Carreras in a dominant first half set the Pumas on their way.
But after Mark Bennett and Rory Hutchinson tries brought the tourists level, scrum-half Gonzalo Bertranou won it with an opportunistic effort with a quarter of the match left.
“Of course, it was the first step, there were some parts of the game I liked and some that we need to work on,” Cheika, 55, told ESPN.
“But like I said before the game, we need to do two jobs: work long term and try to do our best in the short term.”
Cheika knew he would have his work cut out with a team that had lost eight of their last nine internationals, saying in midweek: “We know that on Saturday we will not be perfect.”
But it was a Scotland side that had not lost to the Pumas since 2011, winning on five of their previous six visits to Argentina, who put in a poor first half showing.—APP