A Jaguares XV became the first Argentine rugby team to win a South African competition when they beat the Griffons 27-13 Friday in the Currie Cup second division final, despite three yellow cards.
With 27 Jaguares in the Argentina Rugby World Cup squad, the Buenos Aires-based Super Rugby side sent their reserves to compete in the second tier of the oldest national rugby provincial competition.
The South Americans triumphed in northwestern university city Potchefstroom although skipper Franciso Gorrisen and fellow forwards Santiago Portillo and Nicolas Solveyra were sin binned.
"We are really tired as it has been a tough couple of months here in South Africa, but we are also very happy to be taking this beautiful trophy back to Argentina," said Gorrisen.
In winning all seven pool games, a semi-final and the final, the Jaguares scored 78 tries, and improved on a seven-point margin over the Griffons from central city Welkom in the league phase.
After leading 17-6 at half-time, the Jaguares had to defend desperately before they made a lineout steal close to their line and it turned the momentum back toward the Buenos Aires team.
A tremendous rolling maul followed, enabling the Argentines to moved upfield and they were awarded a penalty try after a scrum infringement to take an 18-point advantage on 60 minutes.
Tomas Cubilla and Facundo Cordero scored a try each for the Jaguaresand fly-half Domingo Miotti, who had some Super Rugby game time this season, slotted two conversions and two penalties.