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The Rugby World Cup reaches the semi-final stage with Argentina and New Zealand the first of the final four teams to get stuck into the action. They face each other on Friday at the Stade de France in Paris knowing that victory will secure a place in the final.
Argentina reached the last four with a comfortable, in the end, win over Wales in Marseille. A missed penalty kick from Emiliano Boffelli allowed Wales to put the first points on the board and the Pumas slipped to 10-0 down. Wise and tactical kicking followed with Boffelli booting over four penalties to extinguish the deficit. Tomos Williams restored Wales’ lead with a brilliant try before two late tries from Joel Sclavi and Nicolas Sanchez sealed the win for the South Americans.
In contrast, New Zealand played their best match of the tournament to edge out Ireland 28-24, defending 37 phases in the dying minutes of the game to hold onto their lead and set up this fixture with Argentina.
Here’s everything you need to know ahead of the match plus get all the Rugby World Cup odds and tips here:
When is Argentina vs New Zealand?
The semi-final is scheduled to kick off at 8pm BST on Friday 20th October at Stade de Frace in Paris.
How can I watch it?
Viewers in the United Kingdom can watch the match live on ITV1 with coverage beginning at 7:30pm BST.
Registered users can also stream the match for free online on ITVX.
For their Rugby World Cup semi-final against New Zealand in Saint-Denis, Argentina head coach Michael Cheika has brought in scrum-half Gonzalo Bertranou for Tomás Cubelli in the only change from the team that beat Wales in the quarter-final.
New Zealand, meanwhile, bring wing Mark Tele’a into the side for the semi-finals after he missed the All Blacks’ last eight win over Ireland for disciplinary reasons. Tele’a replaces Leicester Fainga’anuku with the other change to Ian Foster’s side coming in the second row, where Sam Whitelock, the most capped All Black ever, is preferred to long time locking partner Brodie Retallick.
Retallick has to be content with a place on the bench, which also includes hooker Samisoni Taukei’aho, not involved last week.
Argentina XV: 15-Juan Cruz Mallia, 14-Emiliano Boffelli, 13-Lucio Cinti, 12-Santiago Chocobares, 11-Mateo Carreras, 10-Santiago Carreras. 9-Gonzalo Bertranou, 1-Thomas Gallo, 2-Julián Montoya, 3-Francisco Gómez Kodela, 4-Guido Petti Pagadizabal, 5-Tomas Lavanini, 6-Juan Martin Gonzalez, 7-Marcos Kremer, 8-Facundo Isa.
Replacements: 16-Agustín Creevy, 17-Joel Sclavi, 18-Eduardo Bello, 19-Matias Alemanno, 20-Rodrigo Bruni, 21-Lautaro Bazan Velez, 22-Nicolas Sanchez, 23-Matías Moroni
New Zealand XV: 15-Beauden Barrett, 14-Will Jordan, 13-Rieko Ioane, 12-Jordie Barrett, 11-Mark Tele’a, 10-Richie Mo’unga, 9-Aaron Smith; 1-Ethan de Groot, 2-Codie Taylor, 3-Tyrel Lomax, 4-Samuel Whitelock, 5-Scott Barrett, 6-Shannon Frizell, 7-Sam Cane, 8-Ardie Savea
Replacements: 16-Samisoni Taukei’aho, 17-Tamaiti Williams, 18-Fletcher Newell, 19-Brodie Retallick, 20-Dalton Papali’i, 21-Finlay Christie 22-Damian McKenzie, 23-Anton Lienert-Brown
Argentina – 10/1
Draw – 40/1
New Zealand – 1/16
Argentina are the underdogs heading into the game, especially after New Zealand clinched a tight victory over Ireland last time out. That win may have taken the sting out of the All Blacks but Ian Foster’s side should be enough quality to get through to the final.
Argentina 16-27 New Zealand.
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