Warren Gatland has plenty to ponder as his Welsh side
prepares to take on the All Blacks. Photo Reuters
The evidence needs to mount rapidly and in large dollops
if Wales are to be a threat to the All Blacks in a fortnight.
The Six Nations champions were a placid bunch yesterday as
they fell convincingly to the Pumas who had been unable to
win a game in the Rugby Championship.
A generous view would be that Wales were rusty after a long
Their lack of cohesion and absence of any great bite across
the park were alarming signs for their next hit out against
Samoa before the All Blacks hit Cardiff.
Warren Gatland has moved away temporarily from coaching
Wales, handing the official duties to Rob Howley, while he
sifts the talent for the Lions tour to Australia next year.
Gatland will return to coach the side against the All Blacks
then the Wallabies the week after, but may want to revise
that deal after yesterday's sluggish offering.
Defeat has almost certainly cost Wales any chance of making
the prime top four seeds for the next World Cup when that
draw is completed early next month.
Gatland would not have enjoyed being linked to Wales'
performance and would have found it tough to get many of
their names deep into his certainties' list for the Lions.
No 8 Toby Faletau, fullback Leigh Halfpenny and wing George
North gave a fair bit but there was an alarming lack of sting
from the rest.
Their scrum was adequate but the lack of energy stood out
more than anything.
Sam who? would be the question after the ineffective openside
performance from Welsh captain Sam Warburton.
He is reputed to be in a dogfight for his Wales jersey let
alone a touring Lions uniform and his lack of impact against
the Pumas underlined his troubles.
Argentina, led impressively once more by Juan Martinez
Fernandez Lobbe, were up for it. They took some time to find
their way on a Millennium Stadium surface which cut up badly
but they engineered two slashing tries after the interval
which ensured their victory.
The surface as much as anything will disturb the All Blacks
staff when they dissect the game.
Wales lost midfield hardman Jamie Roberts to concussion but
he had been well contained by the Pumas defence which
scrambled and numbered up well.
Lock Alun Wyn-Jones also had to be replaced and those exits,
on top of the miserable performance, drew columns about
Most were thinking that meant the All Blacks, but they might
want to look a little closer when Samoa come calling this
- by Wynne Gray in Edinburgh