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Last Updated: Sunday, 18 June 2006, 15:15 GMT 16:15 UK
Pichot targets Six Nations place
Agustin Pichot says the Pumas deserve a place in the Six Nations
Agustin Pichot says the Pumas deserve a place in the Six Nations
Argentina captain Agustin Pichot has renewed calls for the Pumas to play in the Six Nations championship.

The South Americans completed a 2-0 Test series win over Wales on Saturday and Pichot believes they deserve more than just tour matches and World Cups.

"The whole of rugby should think where we are going, if they want Argentina to compete or not," said the scrum-half.

"We would be very, very proud to play the Six Nations and would do anything to play in that tournament."

As a southern hemisphere rugby nation, Argentina would seem more suited to join an expanded Tri-Nations with Australia, New Zealand and South Africa.

They should think a little bit more about us and lend us a hand

Pumas captain Agustin Pichot

But the overwhelming majority of the Pumas squad play their club rugby in Europe, with Pichot himself one of six Argentines on the books of French giants Stade Francais.

Pumas have found homes in other French clubs such as Clermont Auvergne, Biarritz (three each) and Toulouse, while England, Ireland and Scotland are other bases.

Given that situation, Argentina coach Marcelo Loffreda would find it much easier to gather his squad for the northern hemisphere's Six Nations.

"It's up to the International Rugby Board and people who are not on the field," Pichot added, speaking after Saturday's record 45-27 win over a youthful Wales side.

"They should think a little bit more about us and lend us a hand."

The Argentine Rugby Union is in protected receivership and desperately in need of funds after losing a costly court case.

A place at the lucrative Six Nations table would also help the UAR get back on its feet and be able to deal with the demands of its players for better pay and facilities.

Those demands saw 60 leading Argentine players threaten to strike ahead of the Test series against Wales, although this was averted.

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18 Jun 06 |  Internationals
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Argentina 45-27 Wales
17 Jun 06 |  Internationals
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11 Jun 06 |  Internationals


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