Live Commentary: Rugby World Cup - New Zealand vs. Argentina

Live Commentary: New Zealand vs. Argentina
© PA Photos
New Zealand take on Argentina in this Rugby World Cup quarter-final clash.

Good morning and thanks for joining Sports Mole for the last Rugby World Cup quarter-final of the weekend. Tournament hosts (and favourites for the cup) New Zealand take on Argentina at Eden Park and the winner will go on to face Australia next weekend in the semi-finals. It's not unfair to say that Argentina are underdogs going into this clash, but they will play with nothing to lose and the power of their forwards should challenge the All Blacks. New Zealand, meanwhile, are still reeling from the loss of their talisman Dan Carter to a groin injury, while captain Richie McCaw will be playing with a foot problem. Can The Pumas make a statement and deliver a shock? Follow along with the action below:

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01min: The anthems are done and the Haka delivered. Referee Nigel Owens gets things going at Eden Park.

02min: New Zealand are making outstanding runs already. They make it to the Argentina 22 but knock-on to give the Pumas the scrum.

05min: New Zealand with some very quick ball. The Argentina forwards are going to have their work cut out today.

07min: What's this? Carter's replacement Colin Slade spills the ball and Argentina boot it along the floor towards the All Blacks try-line and give chase. New Zealand recover it just in time and dust themselves off.

09min: Argentina happy to go through the phases. Santiago Fernandez goes for a drop goal but it drops under.

10min: Winger Cory Jane bombs it down the line and attempts a chip. It goes straight into touch.

11min: Penalty awarded to New Zealand. Piri Weepu steps up to take. It's good. New Zealand 3-0 Argentina.

16min: New Zealand are relentless in attack. The Argentina defence is putting up a good show to hold them.

18min: The Pumas force 15 phases before the line spreads out and Kieran Read goes over in the corner. Nigel Owens defers the decision to the Television Match Official.

19min: 'No try' is the TMO's decision.

20min: Worry for the All Blacks as Colin Slade appears to be hurt. He's up but looking a bit sheepish.

22min: Some lovely play from the All Blacks. A cross-field kick finds Cory Jane on the wing, who then chips forward. It's nearly a try but Argentina gather close to the line.

23min: Sloppy passing hands the All Blacks a five-metre scrum. New Zealand win a penalty.

25min: It's an easy kick for Weepu. New Zealand 6-0 Argentina.

28min: Argentina impeded at the line-out. Contepomi attempts a long-range kick but he doesn't make it.

30min: TRY! Argentina break from a scrum and put in some good running before Julio Farias Cabello goes over in the corner. Contepomi converts. New Zealand look shaken. It's New Zealand 6-7 Argentina.

33min: Oh dear. Colin Slade is replaced by Aaron Cruden.

35min: Cruden's first touch is met with a crunching forearm tackle to the face from Contepomi. Penalty to the All Blacks. Weepu delivers another stunning kick. New Zealand 9-7 Argentina.

39min: New Zealand handed another penalty and it's a walk in the park for Weepu. New Zealand 12-7 Argentina.

40min: HALF-TIME. It's not the drubbing that some people expected. New Zealand appear to have the game under control despite the only try of the game so far coming from The Pumas. Argentina have been guilty in the past of letting things fall apart in the second half. Let's see if they can keep up the pressure.

41min: SECOND HALF UNDERWAY. Isaia Toeava is on for Mils Muliaina.

46min: New Zealand penalised for crossing. Marcelo Bosch makes an incredible kick from the half-way line. New Zealand 12-10 Argentina.

49min: New Zealand are sparked into action and challenge the Argentina defence with some good running and passing. An infringement at the ruck wins New Zealand a penalty. Weepu extends his streak to five from five. It's New Zealand 15-10 Argentina.

52min: The All Blacks looking very dangerous now. Sonny Bill Williams is finding his feet and making some good runs but his trademark offloads aren't working just yet. Argentina hold on.

55min: The hard work nearly pays off as a cross chip from Weepu finds Cruden. He dives for the line but is bundled into touch.

57min: New Zealand are on the pick-and drive inches from the Argentina try line.

57min: McCaw dives over but it goes upstairs for the TMO to decide.

58min: "No try," confirms Mr. TMO. Meanwhile, Argentina are yellow-carded for their efforts in the ruck. Weepu makes it six from six. New Zealand 18-10 Argentina.

61min: Cruden makes a passionate run but spills the ball to hand Argentina a scrum.

62min: Ali Williams comes on for Sam Whitelock.

65min: Argentina are back to full strength.

68min: TRY! The All Blacks finally get their try as Kieran Read picks up a pass from Kaino and goes over in the corner. Weepu drifts his conversion attempt just wide. It's New Zealand 23-10 Argentina.

69min: A teary Mario Ledesma leaves the field for what will probably be his last time. The 38-year-old said he would be retiring after the tournament. Round of applause, please.

72min: Argentina penalised at the ruck. It's long range but Weepu will have a bash. It's a wonderful kick. New Zealand 26-10 Argentina.

78min: TRY! Lock Brad Thorn finds himself clear and jogs one in down the line. Cruden adds two points. New Zealand 33-10 Argentina.

80min: FULL TIME. Argentina put in a passionate performance but New Zealand were just too good. Worringly for the All Blacks though, they had to rely on the boot of Piri Weepu for the majority of their points as tries proved few and far between. So now to the semi-finals, where they will take on their old rivals Australia in a mouth-watering Southern Hemisphere clash. New Zealand 33-10 Argentina.

Colin Slade
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