Australia v Argentina, Rugby Championship
Pumas surprised with Genia move
September 13, 2013
Argentina fly-half Juan Martin Hernandez is wrapped up, Argentina v Stade Francais, Estadio Jose Amalfitani, Buenos Aires, Argentina, August 4, 2012
Pumas fly-half Juan Martin Hernandez is expecting Will Genia to make an impact at some stage © Getty Images

Argentina fly-half Juan Martin Hernandez admits his side were surprised to see Will Genia left out of the Wallabies' starting line-up for Saturday's match in Perth.

After three successive defeats to begin his Australia reign, coach Ewen McKenzie has acted by sending the experienced scrum-half to the bench.

"It is a surprise. He is one of the best in his position in the world. Maybe it is a tactical thing," Hernandez said. "Maybe they will put Genia into the game with 30 minutes to play to give another rhythm to the Test when perhaps we are more tired. Maybe it will be a good tactic, you never know."

Brumbies scrum-half Nic White will take over, in his first start for the Wallabies, while Ben Mowen will skipper the side in just his seventh Test.

Genia's demotion has been regarded as McKenzie getting tough on his team - who have lost four Tests in a row stretching back to the decisive defeat to the British & Irish Lions in June. Australia are also without a point after their winless start under their new boss, and defeat in Perth would set a new record for consecutive losses in a home season.

Australia were beaten 38-12 by South Africa in Brisbane last weekend, following heavy losses to New Zealand (twice) and the Lions. Despite that Hernandez remains wary of a Wallabies side that he believes is showing signs of piecing together the attacking style of rugby McKenzie desires.

"All the sides the Wallabies have played recently have been very good," the 31-year-old said. "Always, results talk more but the press has been tough on the Australian team. They are a very big challenge for us. I love the Wallabies game. They are one of the best in their attacking structures that I know. The opposition has been defending them well but when I watch the Wallabies I see what the backline have been practising. If they finish all the moves they do have they are very dangerous."

Argentina are still looking for their first Rugby Championship win since entering the competition last year. They led the Wallabies 19-6 on the Gold Coast 12 months ago only to allow the home side to rally, but Hernandez said any desire to grab a breakthrough win would not play on their minds.

"Victory comes as a consequence of playing good rugby and that is what we have to concentrate on," he said. "We are learning from the games we have played and getting more experience to hopefully control games better with our rhythm as a team."

Follow live text commentary of the Test between Australia and Argentina on Saturday, September 14, from 730pm (AEST), 930am (GMT)

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