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NZ claw past Pumas, set up semifinal vs Wallabies

Updated: October 09, 2011, 05:24


AUCKLAND, New Zealand(AP) New Zealand won the torrid forwards showdown against Argentina with a 33-10 victory Sunday that set up a trans-Tasman semifinal with Australia in the Rugby World Cup.

The Pumas went gunning for the All Blacks up front, and New Zealand struggled mightily to break their clutches on Eden Park. Argentina even scored a try against the run of play to briefly lead 7-6 in the first half, but under constant siege, the Pumas grudgingly conceded penalties.

Scrumhalf Piri Weepu did a perfect impersonation of departed superstar Dan Carter by booting over his first six shots at goal to build a safe 18-10 lead after an hour, after which Argentina finally ran out of energy.

New Zealand finally ran in tries to No. 8 Kieran Read and lock Brad Thorn, and could look forward to meeting the Wallabies on the same ground in a week.

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