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Last Updated: Sunday, 19 October, 2003, 15:09 GMT 16:09 UK
World Cup golden moments
Argentina 28-24 Ireland
World Cup quarter-final play-off, 20 October 1999
Bollaert Stadium, Lens

Pumas leave Irish reeling
by Diego Albanese

Diego Albanese scores the match-winning try against Ireland
Albanese's try sealed a famous win for the Pumas
We get the chance to play Ireland again in this tournament and, after 1999, I will always have really happy memories of playing the Irish.

The game was a great moment for Argentine rugby.

Four years ago we were overwhelming underdogs and everyone said there was no way we could beat them.

Ireland were supposed to play the quarter-final against France in Dublin and were confident they would qualify for that.

They left all their stuff at their Dublin hotel when they went to play us in France, and to us it was like they were saying "let's beat the Argies and come back to the hotel".

In the end they had to head back and get their stuff.

I remember there was still some Irish stuff in there when we finally turned up for the quarter-finals - I enjoyed that!

They really thought they were going to beat us, although that did not make us that popular in the hotel. But the Irish are so friendly it wasn't that much of a problem.

The game itself was one of the greatest moments in my international career. It was not so much the try but the fact that the moment came with only a few minutes to go.

Ireland 24
Pens: Humphreys (7)
DG: Humphreys
Argentina 28
Try: Albanese
Con: Quesada
Pens: Quesada (7)

The try moved us into the lead for the first time in the game and was the only one of the 80 minutes.

We'd practised that move hundreds of times in training. And so we did it and it worked, ending up with me touching down in the corner.

It was a great reward for all of us. I'd never take that as solely mine. When you score a try it's a team effort. That was a great team effort, of all the forwards and the back line.

Maybe in a couple of years everyone will say "great try Diego" and I'll agree but I don't see it as that at the moment.

For me it was a great moment in a great game and great for the team and it is among my career highlights.

Interview by Matt Majendie

Links to more History stories


Players remember

1999: Australia win


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