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Argentina's Moroni to miss Rugby Championship as Imhoff returns

FILE PHOTO: Rugby Union - Rugby World Cup 2019 - Pool C - England v Argentina - Tokyo Stadium, Tokyo, Japan - October 5, 2019 Argentina's Matias Moroni scores their first try REUTERS/Matthew Childs/File Photo

(Reuters) - Argentina coach Mario Ledesma has named a squad of 45 players to compete at the Rugby Championship in Australia next month, but centre Matias Moroni will miss out with knee ligament damage.

The loss of the experienced Moroni will be a blow, but there is a recall for versatile outside back Juan Imhoff, who could play his first test since the 2015 Rugby World Cup in England.

Imhoff, 32, has impressed for French Top14 side Racing 92 to force his way into the plans of Ledesma.

The home-based players in the squad have been in camp in Uruguay and will leave for Australia on Sunday, while the remaining 13 European-based players are expected to link up with the team on Oct. 19.

Players and staff will have to go through a 14-day quarantine period in Sydney, with the team’s first fixture scheduled to be against world champions South Africa on Nov. 7 in Brisbane.

Teams have been allowed to bring extended squads to the competition to make up for possible injuries, with quarantine restrictions meaning players cannot be flown in as replacements.

The entire Rugby Championship will be staged in Australia and also includes New Zealand, with each team playing the other twice and the final round of games to be played on Dec. 12.

Reporting by Nick Said; Editing by Toby Davis

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