'The rules were clear' - Mario Ledesma after six Argentina players were expelled from Rugby Championship

Mario Ledesma will have to deal with the absence of six Argentina players
Mario Ledesma will have to deal with the absence of six Argentina players

Argentina head coach Mario Mario Ledesma reacted to the expulsion of six Argentina players and two staff members from the final round of the Rugby Championship game against Australia to be played on Saturday.

Pablo Matera, Sebastian Cancelliere, Joaquin Diaz Bonilla, Felipe Ezcurra, Santiago Medrano and Santiago Socino, the team manager Lucas Chioccarelli and video analyst Rodrigo Martinez went for an unauthorised trip to Byron Bay following which they were not allowed to enter the bio bubble where the rest of the team members have been placed due to a surge in Covid-19 cases.

As a result, SANZAAR had banned the six players and the two staff members from rejoining the squad as the breached the health orders.

Ledesma said the decision on the members, who breached the tournament protocols will be taken later but admitted that the "rules were clear".

"We will talk about that when the tournament is finished. Now it's time for rugby," he said on a zoom call.

"The rules were clear for everybody. It was a day off, they made that decision and the situation is what it is.

"What I can tell you is that we put our minds into the solution, not the problem," he said when asked what he felt after learning the players were stuck in New South Wales.

"We started thinking. 'Who's going to replace this player or that player? How are we going to prepare the boys to have the best game that they can and close the Rugby Championship like they deserve?’

"Our mind was put immediately into the focus on rugby and to prepare as best as possible."

Argentina have lost all their five matches in the tournament and are languishing at the bottom of the Rugby Championship table.