5 players who scored massive on their international debuts – but not all went on to greatness

RUCK looks back on some of the best international bows, ranked by points scored.

5. Eduardo de Forteza
ARGENTINA v Paraguay – 25 Sep 1975
Cons 11, Pens 3,  31pts

Played three tests in four days for his country, winning all three against Paraguay, Brazil, and Chili respectively.


3=. Justinus van der Westhuizen
NAMIBIA v Zambia – 26 May 2007
Tries 3, Cons 9,  33pts

Won just two caps in the lead up to the 2007 Rugby World Cup, but never pulled on the blue jersey again.


3. Carlos Spencer
NEW ZEALAND v Argentina – 21 Jun 1997
Tries 2, Cons 10, Pens 1, 33pts

He made his first Test appearance for the All Blacks against Argentina in 1997, landing 33 points in a 93-8 win. He struggled to fight his way past Andrew Mehrtens into the All Blacks jersey on a regular basis, often finding himself on the bench until 2002.

Having been selected for the All Blacks’ 1999 World Cup squad but not playing through injury, Spencer finally made his mark at the 2003 tournament in Australia. He will be remembered however for the loose pass that was intercepted for a try by Australia centre Stirling Mortlock, sending the All Blacks out at the quarter-final stage.

Having won the Super 12 with the Blues in 2003, Spencer moved to Northampton Saints in 2005, ruling himself out of contention to play for the All Blacks against the British and Irish Lions in order to train with his new club.

Spencer enjoyed a successful period with the Saints despite their relegation from the Premiership in 2007, becoming a senior and respected player as they fought their way out of National League One. Spencer left Northampton in January 2009 after failing to break into the first team on a regular basis following their return to the top flight.

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