«Argentina belongs in the South» IRB says

The dilemma about Argentina's integration in a major Nations' tournament has made a step forward towards its decission. The IRB has divised a plan to integrate Argentina into the Tri Nations around 2010. The plan means an increase in the tests the argentinians will play in 2008 and 2009.
The solution will not be easy. A look to the map sets Argentina closer to the three SANZAR nations than to the northern hemisphere ones. However, argentinian players massively play in France, Italy and the United Kingdom and that makes it easier to find a place in the calendar for the 6 Nations. Thus, most argentinian players have stated their preferences on playing against the european nations. There even were contacts between the UAR and the spanish city of Valencia to make that city the official place for the Pumas' european tests.

The IRB has, however been clear; Argentina's integrations shall be inside of the Tri-Nations. It will raise doubts on how to arrange Top 14 and Premiership calendars when tests matches are to be played.

Now some further questions arise: Will aregntinians still massively go to Europe to play? Will a argentinian franchise be created for the Super 14? That would be a very interesting point, I think.

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