Tbilisi Cup Round 2 Preview


Game One 17.00

Georgia v Argentina Jaguares


Round two of the Tbilisi Cup 2014 re-commences tomorrow evening with the two winners from round one going head to head in the 17.00 kick-off at Avchala Stadium.

The Georgians were left frustrated after their 23-13 win over Spain on Saturday. The hosts crossed for three first half tries but were unable to claim the all important bonus point try in the second half.

They have made eight changes to their starting line-up for the encounter with Argentina Jaguars. Four changes in the back line including a start for Irakli Qiasashvili at full back in place of Beka Tsiklauri who was man of the match against the Spanish.

Milton Haig has changed the centre combination with Merab Shaikadze coming in to become the nation's youngest captain at 21 years old and included Giorgi Rokhvadze at scrum half. Simon Maisuradze and Giorgi Mtchedlishvili start in the front row alongside Zurab Zhvania and  Dimitri Basilaia moves from number 8 to blindside flanker with Givi Berishvili and Beka Bitsadze coming into the back row.

Head Coach Milton Haig said: "As a group we were disappointed with the second half against Spain. When we put the foot down in the first half we scored three nice tries within about 15 minutes. In the second half we wanted to keep the intensity up but our execution and basic skill set let us down and killed our momentum. We still managed to create a number of opportunities so that is a positive. Argentina are a good side, they have people who like to use the ball and run with the ball. They are natural attackers so our defence will have too be really good tomorrow."

For Argentina Jaguars it is a case of continuing on from where they left off against Emerging Italy. A clinical second half performance on Saturday saw the South Americans run in six tries to claim the only bonus point win in round one.

The current competition leaders have made seven changes for the clash with Georgia bringing Matias Masera and Juan Cappiello into the back line and changing the half backs. Javier Rojas and Felipe Ezcurra take over from Sebastian Poet and Marcos Bollini.

Upfront, Nahuel Lobo and Facundo Bosch come into the front row and Nicolas Proto starts at blindside flanker.

Bernado Urdaneta, Argentina Jaguars coach, said: "We have rotated the squad for the match, this tournament is for the development of our players, so it is important everyone gets game time. We will be looking to continue the same performance we finished with against Emerging Italy, however the Georgians will be tough. They are a patient and physical team that are playing with a new style. There forwards are good but their backs are also dangerous which will make it a tough match."

Georgia: 15. Irakli Qiasashvili; 14. Tamaz Mtchedlidze; 13. Tedo Zibzibadze; 12. Merab Shaikadze ©; 11. Alexander Todua; 10. Lasha Malaguradze; 9. Giorgi Rokhvadze; 1. Zurab Zhvania; 2. Simon Maisuradze; 3. Giorgi Mtchedlishvili; 4. Giorgi Nemsadze; 5. Kote Mikautadze; 6. Dimitri Basilaia; 7. Givi Berishvili; 8. Beka Bitsadze

Replacements: 16. Shalva Mamukashvili; 17. Guram Kavtidze; 18. Elizbar Quparadze; 19. Lasha Lomidze; 20. Giorgi Tkhilaishvili; 21. Giorgi Begadze; 22. Beka Tsiklauri

Argentina Jaguars: 15. Gonzalo Guitierrez Taboada; 14. Matias Masera; 13. Juan Cappiello; 12. Juan Pablo Socino; 11. Ramiro Moyano; 10. Javier Rojas; 9. Felipe Ezcurra; 1. Nahuel Lobo; 2. Facundo Bosch; 3. Damian Arias; 4.Martin Chappesoni; 5. Lucas Ponce; 6. Nicolas Proto; 7. Facundo Isa; 8. Lisandro Ahaulli ©

Replacements: 16. Santiago Garcia Botta; 17. Tomas Baravalle; 18. Gaston Cortes; 19. Lucas Maguire; 20. Lautaro Casado; 21. Marcos Bollini; 22. Dan Isaack


Game Two

Emerging Italy v Spain


In the second match of the evening Spain and Emerging Italy will be looking to get their first win and get their campaigns up and running.

The Spanish welcome back tour Captain Pablo Feijoo to start at scrum half. Jamie Nava, who broke his hand in the opening match against Georgia, has returned back to Spain for treatment.

Elsewhere Alejandro Gutierrez and Pablo Fontes come into the backline with Ignacio Molina coming into the second row. Adam Newton, a try scorer against Georgia on Saturday, moves from openside flanker to number 8.

Spain Coach Santiago Santos was happy with his teams opening round performance but is still looking for improvements. "It was a good first game but we need to push on. We have another difficult game against Emerging Italy tomorrow, they are tough at the breakdown and we will need more possession than we had against Georgia to be able to compete."

Santos added: "It is great to have Pablo back at scrum half, he has a lot of experience and the squad look up to him. At the same time it is a shame that Jaime Nava is unavailable, but it gives other players an opportunity to step in."

Emerging Italy have made two changes in their backline bringing Tommaso Boni into the centre to partner captain Tommaso Castello and Marcello Violi at scrum half. In the forward pack, Rudy Biancotti comes into the front row with Michele Andreotti and Maxime Mbanda’ promoted from the bench to start in the second row and back row respectively. Matteo Ferro starts at number 8.

Andrea Duodo, Emerging Italy Manager said: "We have made tactical changes for this game, our first objective is that all the squad get game time. Our first half was good in the opening game but our second half was not. We need to be more patient at the breakdown and need more possession, without the ball it is impossible to play. Spain have threats, they are a very fast team and dangerous in broken play. It will be a very close match."

Emerging Italy: 15. David Michael Odiete; 14. Simone Ragusi,13. Tommaso Boni; 12.Tommaso Castello ©, 11. Michele Visentin; 10. Edoardo Padovani, 9. Marcello Violi; 1. Andrea Lovotti; 2. Ornel Gega; 3. Rudy Biancotti; 4. Filippo Gerosa; 5. Michele Andreotti; 6. Maxime Mbanda’; 7. Emiliano Caffini; 8. Matteo Ferro

Replacements: 16. Giovanni Scalvi; 17. Luca Scarsini; 18. Jacopo Sarto; 19.  Nicola Belardo; 20. Giulio Bisegni; 21. James Ambrosini; 22. Carlo Canna

Spain: 15. Javier Carrion; 14. Alejandro Gutierrez; 13. Pablo Fontes; 12. Daniel Ross Snee; 11. Segio Fernanadez; 10. Mariano Garcia; 9. Pablo Feijoo ©;  1. Francisco Javier Sanz; 2. Juan Anaya; 3. Jesus Moreno;4.Alejandro Blanco; 5. Ignacio Molina; 6. Manuel Mora; 7. Javier De Juan; 8. Adam Newton

Replacements: 16. Francisco Blanco; 17. Romain Asensi; 18. Agustin Ortiz; 19. Jose Luis Del Valle; 20. Francisco Coplet; 21. Alberto Diaz; 22. Facundo Munilla



Georgian time


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