Tokyo - France unveiled their third halfback pairing in three games on Thursday as they changed 11 players for their Rugby World Cup Pool C meeting with Tonga.

Baptiste Serin will link up with flyhalf Romain Ntamack with Camille Chat, Paul Gabrillagues, Sofiane Gitoune and Alivereti Raka the only remaining starters from the 33-9 win over USA.

France, second in Pool C, will expect to take a big step towards the quarter-finals when they play Tonga in Kumamoto on Sunday, following their wins over Argentina and USA.

Maxime Medard, the sole survivor from France's embarrassing 19-14 loss to Tonga at the 2011 World Cup, is again named at fullback as he gets his chance for revenge.

Serin and Ntamack are France's 16th half-back combination in 43 games since the last World Cup in 2015. However, Jefferson Poirot and Rabah Slimani will start together for the 19th time.



15 Maxime Medard, 14 Damian Penaud, 13 Virimi Vakatawa, 12 Sofiane Guitoune, 11 Alivereti Raka, 10 Romain Ntamack, 9 Baptiste Serin, 8 Gregory Alldritt, 7 Charles Ollivon, 6 Wenceslas Lauret, 5 Sebastien Vahaamahina, 4 Paul Gabrillagues, 3 Rabah Slimani, 2 Camille Chat, 1 Jefferson Poirot (captain)