Is there an ideal way to complete a preparation? With a victory, a final penalty of more than 50 meters crossing the bar of 40 points, and an evening crossed without injuries, the strategist Fabien Galthié, behind his thick glasses, could probably not have dreamed of better. Facing Australia, Sunday August 27, his French men’s rugby team went through a roller coaster, delivering a part “a little choppy in the first half”as the rear Thomas Ramos turned, before winning in large widths (41-17).
“A preparation match is there to prepare”, stated the tricolor coach after the meeting. With three victories in a row (and a narrow initial defeat in Scotland), his team has gained momentum during the month of August, but is now down to “the last step, the one that interests us” : the 2023 World Cup in France, which will open on Friday September 8 on the same lawn of the Stade de France with an enticing France – New Zealand. “Here, we go into another dimension, insisted Fabien Galthié. We are going to switch to another universe. »
Gathered together since July 2, first in Monaco, before continuing with a – short – passage to Marcoussis (Essonne) and a long stay on the Landes coast, in Capbreton, the Blues have finally completed their preparation. “Are we ready? We will find out in [douze] days “, smiled the French captain, Antoine Dupont. Against the Wallabies, the troops of the Toulouse scrum-half struggled at first, leaving the ball to their opponents and only widening the gap with Thomas Ramos’ metronome boot – where Australian striker Carter Gordon failed just a kick.
Then, the Blues recovered. “In the second half, we let go a little more, we were able to hit the lanes several times and put more speed into our game.observed the French captain. With this game, we gained confidence. » Starting with the tricolor winger Damian Penaud (two tries) and Gabin Villière (one try), rather weaned from balls since the start of preparation.
Five days off before switching to the World Cup
If Australia has not won a victory since November 2022, the young shoots of Eddie Jones – who has set out to destroy the team to rebuild a new one, drawing inspiration from the work done by Galthié and his staff – made life difficult for the Blues. “Australia are a team that can be very surprising on the pitch. They have a lot of individuality, players who can make a difference on their own, who bring a lot of danger.”anticipated Antoine Dupont on Saturday.
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