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Australia, Argentina play to 16-16 draw in Tri-Nations match

Australia and Argentina played to a 16-16 Tri-Nations draw on Saturday after fullback Reece Hodge missed with a long-range last-minute penalty goal attempt for the second time in two weeks.

Hodge also had the chance to boot Australia to victory with three minutes to go in its 15-15 draw with the Pumas two weeks ago in Newcastle.

He also struck the uprights with an after-the-siren shot in the Wallabies’ season-opening 16-16 stalemate with the All Blacks in Wellington in October.

Argentina's Bautista Delguy, left, is tackled by Australia's Michael Hooper, right, and James O'Connor during their Tri-Nations rugby union match in Sydney, Australia, Saturday, Dec. 5, 2020. (AP PhotoRick Rycroft)

Hodge had earlier slotted three penalty goals on Saturday.

Argentina came into the match as underdogs after being beaten 38-0 by the Tri-Nations champion All Blacks and then having inspirational skipper Pablo Matera and two teammates stood down for disciplinary reasons.

Michael Hooper, in his last test as captain before taking a year-long sabbatical in Japan, was yellow carded in the first half for a no-arms tackle.

Australia's Marika Koroibete, right, charges toward Argentina's Nicolas Sánchez during their Tri-Nations rugby union match in Sydney, Australia, Saturday, Dec. 5, 2020. (AP PhotoRick Rycroft)

His replacement, forward Lukhan Salakaia-Loto, was sent off for making dangerous contact to Santiago Grondona’s head at the 60-minute mark.

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Australia's Jordan Petaia, right, is caught by Argentina's Rodrigo Bruni during their Tri-Nations rugby union match in Sydney, Australia, Saturday, Dec. 5, 2020. (AP PhotoRick Rycroft)

Argentina's Pablo Matera, right, and Julian Montoya talk on the field prior to their Tri-Nations rugby union match against Australia in Sydney, Australia, Saturday, Dec. 5, 2020. (AP PhotoRick Rycroft)

Argentina's head coach Mario Ledesma walks on the field prior to their Tri-Nations rugby union match against Australia in Sydney, Australia, Saturday, Dec. 5, 2020. (AP PhotoRick Rycroft)

Argentina's Pablo Matera walks on the field prior to their Tri-Nations rugby union match against Australia in Sydney, Australia, Saturday, Dec. 5, 2020. (AP PhotoRick Rycroft)

Argentina's Pablo Matera, second right, and Julian Montoya talk with head coach Mario Ledesma on the field prior to their Tri-Nations rugby union match against Australia in Sydney, Australia, Saturday, Dec. 5, 2020. (AP PhotoRick Rycroft)

Argentina's Pablo Matera, right, and Julian Montoya walk on the field prior to their Tri-Nations rugby union match against Australia in Sydney, Australia, Saturday, Dec. 5, 2020. (AP PhotoRick Rycroft)