Rugby

Michalak gets France nod

2012-11-08 12:39
Frederic Michalak (File)

Paris - Mercurial Toulon playmaker Frederic Michalak's stop-start international career received a further boost when he was named ahead of Francois Trinh-Duc at flyhalf for France against Australia on Saturday.

Michalak's days in the No 10 shirt in Toulon since returning from a second stint with the Sharks in South Africa have been limited, the former Toulouse stalwart instead appearing more often at scrum-half.

The star-studded Toulon squad, coached by former France handler Bernard Laporte, features a backline controlled by England's Jonny Wilkinson, with Australian playmaker Matt Giteau also adept in the flyhalf role.

Michalak's utility role is seen as invaluable by Laporte, but was not considered something that would necessarily enhance his chances at nailing down a berth at 10 in the France squad coached by Philippe Saint-Andre.

But that has not stopped Saint-Andre from plumping again for Michalak after he starred in France's summer tour to Argentina.

Accompanying Michalak at halfback will be Maxime Machenaud, who made his debut alongside the 30-year-old 56-time capped Toulonnais in the last match played by Les Bleus, a 59-10 rout of the Argentinians.

It means a spot on the bench for the influential Morgan Parra, the accomplished Clermont scrumhalf and goal kicker undoubtedly assured of a valuable role in the second half.

"The selections follow the logic of the last Test in Argentina when we were happy with Maxime and Frederic Michalak," Saint-Andre said.

"The choice was also made more simple by the fact that Morgan has only been able to train for three days."

Saint-Andre added that Michalak will take over kicking duties with centre Florian Fritz on call for any long-range pots at goal.

An international debut will be handed to 30-year-old Castres prop Yannick Forestier, preferred at loosehead to Clermont's Thomas Domingo.

Pascal Pape skippers the side from the second row, with Toulouse flanker Yannick Nyanga playing his first international since the ill-tempered third-place play-off of the 2007 World Cup (which France lost 34-10 to Argentina).

Nyanga, who takes over from the injured captain Thierry Dusautoir on the blindside, received not a single call up during the reign of Saint-Andre's predecessor Marc Lievremont.

He will start alongside Louis Picamoles and Fulgence Ouedraogo in the backrow.

There was no place in the match-day 23 for sensational teenage Toulouse centre Gael Fickou, with Fritz teaming up in midfield with Maxime Mermoz.

That means a move to the wing for Clermont's Wesley Fofana, Brice Dulin and veteran Vincent Clerc completing the back three.

Teams:

France: 15 Brice Dulin, 14 Wesley Fofana, 13 Florian Fritz, 12 Maxime Mermoz, 11 Vincent Clerc, 10 Frederik Michalak, 9 Maxime Machenaud, 8 Louis Picamoles, 7 Fulgence Ouedraogo, 6 Yannick Nyanga, 5 Yoann Maestri, 4 Pascal Pape (captain), 3 Nicolas Mas, 2 Dimitri Szarzewski, 1 Yannick Forestier

Substitutes: 16 Benjamin Kayser, 17 Thomas Domingo, 18 Vincent Debaty, 19 Jocelino Suta, 20 Damien Chouly, 21 Morgan Parra, 22 Francois Trinh-Duc, 23 Yoann Huget

Australia: 15 Mike Harris, 14 Adam Ashley-Cooper, 13 Ben Tapuai, 12 Pat McCabe, 11 Nick Cummins, 10 Kurtley Beale, 9 Nick Phipps, 8 Wycliff Palu, 7 Michael Hooper, 6 Dave Dennis, 5 Nathan Sharpe (captain), 4 Kane Douglas, 3 Sekope Kepu, 2 Tatafu Polota Nau, 1 Benn Robinson

Substitutes: 16 Stephen Moore, 17 James Slipper, 18 Paddy Ryan, 19 Rob Simmons, 20 Radike Samo, 21 Liam Gill, 22 Brett Sheehan, 23 Berrick Barnes

Read more on:    france  |  frederic michalak  |  rugby
NEXT ON SPORT24X

Dick Muir chats to Sport24

2014-07-25 15:14

 

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
1 comment
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
Live Video Streaming
  • SS3
    Fri, 25 Jul 2014 @
    04:00
  • SS4:
    Fri, 25 Jul 2014 @
    05:00
  • SS5:
    Fri, 25 Jul 2014 @
    06:00
  • Blitz
    Fri, 25 Jul 2014 @
    07:00
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

 
 
Featured Blog

Dave ask if you would like to meet your local sports heroes and stand the chance to win prizes to the value of over R40 000.

Latest blogs
Vote

We're down to four teams left in contention for the 2014 Super Rugby title. Who will be crowned champions?

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Newsletters Sign up for the Morning Glory, Super 15 and Soccer newsletters

Blogs Yes your opinion counts. Get it out there

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

Mobile Sport24 on your mobile phone - WAP, alerts, downloads, services

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

iPhone Latest Sport24 news on your iPhone

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

TV schedule Plan your couch time with our searchable sport TV guide

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

 
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.