Rugby World Cup
Argentina 'heart' behind success over Ireland - Daniel Hourcade
Tom Hamilton
October 18, 2015
Superb Argentina stun Ireland

MILLENNIUM STADIUM, Cardiff -- For all of their breath-taking attacking prowess, it was Argentina's defensive effort at the end which pleased coach Daniel Hourcade the most.

Ireland were hammering away on the Pumas' line for a consolation score, but Argentina held them out to secure a 23-point victory and Hourcade was delighted with their character.

"Yes I feel very proud about the way we played and the way we won because we did everything we could to avoid a try at the end, that shows the heart this team have," he said. "We are very proud of our players who are the main protagonists here. The staff behind me are amazing, they work very hard and are responsible for this success."

In Agustin Creevy's mind "there is no limit to this team" after they reached their first Rugby World Cup semifinal since 2007 thanks to the commanding win over Ireland; a victory built partly on passion but also on faultless technical ability and a solid marshalling of the breakdown.

Ireland 20-43 Argentina (Australia only)
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Argentina will now face Australia in the final four and they will use their Rugby Championship experience to prepare for the semifinal. Despite the sounds of singing coming from the Pumas' changing room, Hourcade feels the muscle memory garnered from their exploits in the southern hemisphere competition will put them in good stead ahead of the semifinal and ensure they can maintain that intensity on Sunday.

"We've played in the Rugby Championship for the last four years, this has given us the ability to pace ourselves and to allow us to be used to playing at this level of intensity on a weekly level.

"I think we are ready for this. The match was really hard but we have seven days to recover and this what we've been doing for a while and we'll be in a good condition against whatever team we have to face."

WATCH: Maradona dances with Pumas
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After their pool stage win over Tonga, Argentina football legend Diego Maradona said he would return and watch them in the semifinal if they reached there. With that spot now secured, Creevy is hopeful he will keep his promise.

"Anyone who comes to see us is welcome as long as they support us. Yes Maradona made that promise, we'll see. Maybe he will be there supporting us in the next match."

And Creevy added of his own emotions: "I feel amazing, I don't know how to explain it. I still can't get around it; I still don't know what to say. It's a dream for many people; we've been working for this for a long time. It's not just the players. It's the coaches. Our growth has been amazing, I can't put my happiness into words."

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

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