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Argentina reaches Rugby World Cup semifinals after coming back twice to beat Wales

Matias Alemanno Argentina Matias Alemanno - The Canadian Press

MARSEILLE, France (AP) — Argentina came from behind twice to beat Wales 29-17 and reach its third Rugby World Cup semifinal on Saturday.

The underdog Pumas were 10-0 down in the first half then 17-12 behind going into the last quarter.

They regained the lead thanks to a freshened pack which overpowered Wales for replacement prop Joel Sclavi to barge over for their first try in the 68th minute. Emiliano Boffelli’s extras made it 19-17.

Matias Moroni then pulled off a try-saving tackle on Louis Rees-Zammit with six minutes to go, and three minutes later new flyhalf Nicolas Sanchez intercepted Wales’ Sam Costelow and scooted 50 meters to secure victory for the Pumas.

Their first semifinal since 2015 next Friday in Paris will be against Ireland or New Zealand, which met later Saturday.

Only five weeks ago, the Pumas started the World Cup by losing to 14-man England in the same Stade Velodrome. They crawled out of Pool D with three straight must-wins and, on Saturday, won a quarterfinal after trailing at halftime for the first time.