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Super Rugby champs the Chiefs to tour Argentina

The Chiefs won their first Super Rugby title in 2012

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Article Published: Monday 31 December 2012

2012 Super Rugby Champions the Chiefs are set to tour Argentina during the June 2013 Super Rugby break

The defending Super Rugby champions will make a 10-day trip to Buenos Aires in order to play a one off match against the Pumas.

The Chiefs have a bye before the Super Rugby break which means that they won't play a match for four weeks and coach Dave Rennie is concerned about his players losing their match fitness.

The finer details of the tour match are still being worked out as none of the All Blacks who will play in a three-test series with France will make the tour but along with management there could be 30 people flying to Argentina.

"The bye was a chance to go to Argentina and give the Pumas a bit of a hit-out and the chance for our boys to play an international side," Rennie told the Star-Times.

"In the old days you'd have teams touring the country playing provincial sides. That's a rare thing nowadays.

"We'll take most of the main squad, barring a few broken guys and the All Blacks, and maybe a couple of extra guys from our development squad. It's a bit of a carrot for those guys."

The tour is expected to financed mostly by the Argentinian Rugby Union as well as some sponsors as the Chiefs don't have spare cash to make the tour happen.

"There's no money in our bank, so we need the support of the Argentinian Rugby Union to make it happen. They're keen on the fixture. We're still sorting out the logistics from a financial point of view," Rennie said.

"Obviously there's sponsors involved. There's potential to make a bit of money on the gate. We're pretty confident it will generate enough money so it won't cost the Argentinian Rugby Union. That's the plan."

As part of the arrangement Rennie, Wayne Smith and Tom Coventry provide coaching clinics, and players will also visit poor communities.

The Chiefs will only be playing a second string team as most of the players will still be involved in matches with their European teams however a second string Pumas team beat France in one of two tests this year.

The plan at this stage is for the Chiefs to leave New Zealand the day after they play the Crusaders on May the 24th and then return to base in Hamilton five days before the All Blacks' first test.

The tour of Argentina means that the majority of the Chiefs squad will be given 12 days rest.

In addition to the Pumas tour a local against a combined Counties Manukau and Bay of Plenty team is being lined up.

"We're still keen to have one more hit-out in that three week window to make sure we're ready to go."

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