Super Rugby is a part of my DNA, the Jaguars are an Argentinian Super Rugby team and watching a sporting fixture in Buenos Aires is a must do. Although the typical recommendation will be a football game, being a kiwi I couldn’t look past a classic game of Super Rugby between the Auckland Blues and the Jaguars.
Super Rugby is most definitely not as popular as football in Buenos Aires but there is still a surprisingly big rugby culture which is ideal for me. Typically hostels and tour agencies will offer you all-inclusive football games and rightly so, they are apparently wild and unlike anything you have probably experienced before. But so was a Super Rugby game in Argentina.
They both have similarities in experience, although the Rugby is downscaled from the size of a football game. But the passion, the intense security and the uniqueness are equally matched.
The Auckland Blues were in town, early in the Super Rugby tournament taking on the famous Jaguars. We had to go, how could we miss it right? Tickets were reasonable, starting at around $11 NZD and going upwards to around $40NZD depending on what type of experience you are after. To be honest, the $11 ticket is all you need, and the experience will be unlike anything you have had before, Super Rugby-wise.
$11 Can Fit The Backpacker Budget
Uber is a thing in Buenos Aires and I would recommend using it. The stadium is a little while out of the main city centre and will take about 20mins to get there, taxis are overpriced, so like most places just use Uber.
Upon arriving, you immediately notice the heavy police presence which gets you a little bit on edge. Not that is was bad just I was not familiar with police walking around with assault rifles at a sporting fixture. Walking into the stadium is a seamless process like any sporting fixture should be, but once you get into the stadium itself it is a different story.
Something I am not familiar with at a Super Rugby game is barbed wire, fences and moats. Yeah, there were actually moats and huge barbed wire fences to keep people off the field which totally blew my mind. There we also medics on the inside of the fence which to me indicated that they were there for us not for the players. Wild. Maybe not so wild for you, but for me it was a totally unique experience.
Once settled in though it was just like any other Super Rugby Game. The passionate Jaguars going at it against the mighty Auckland Blues, for me it was awesome to have a little taste of home so far away.
Argentina Has So Much Passion
The game was a typical derby, momentum going from team to team. You knew when the Jaguars Rugby team scored as the crowd would go nuts, so much passion. Another surprising thing was that when the Auckland Blues scored you heard nothing. The crowd gave them zero, not one boo. Just silence. At times we didn’t even know the Blues had scored.
The game finished with the Jaguars taking it out in the last quarter of the game. Almost to our relief, I’m not sure how the crowd would have reacted to a loss. Although a comforting thing we saw was the sight of All Blacks jerseys everywhere, even the Argentinians froth the All Blacks.
The game we attended was during Carnival week, so after the game there was an array of entertainment outside the stadium including carnival dancers, food and Rugby promotions everywhere. I’m not sure if this is typical at every game or if it was unique to Carnival week, regardless it was an awesome addition to the experience.
Whether it is a Super Rugby game watching the Jaguars or a Football game, attending a sporting game in Buenos Aires a must do, especially if you are from a country like New Zealand. A polar opposite experience from yah typical game at old Waikato stadium. I mean are you even a kiwi if you go overseas and not watch a Super Rugby game? Probably not.
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