Fofana wary of Romania doing a Japan

2015-09-22 14:20
Wesley Fofana (Gallo)

 London - France's star centre Wesley Fofana does not want his first appearance at this World Cup against Romania on Wednesday to end as it did for South Africa against Japan.

The 27-year-old Clermont ace, known for his rapier like thrusts through the middle, returns to the side after a groin injury prevented him playing in France's opening 32-10 win over Italy.

While he admits that he knows little about his Pool D opponents for the game at London's Olympic stadium - long gone are the days when under the dictatorship of Nicolae Ceaucescu they threatened to break up the monopoly of European rugby powerhouses - he says Japan's 34-32 win over the Springboks has been a wakeup call for every team.

The French know from bitter experience taking teams for granted can be costly. They lost to Tonga in a pool game in 2011 and Romania caused a big upset in a Test match in 1990 beating them 12-6, costing coach Jacques Fouroux his job. It was an inauspicious test debut for present coach Philippe Saint-Andre.

"The Japanese result has shown everybody that no game is won in advance," Fofana told French radio. "Nobody gave the Japanese a hope in hell."

Fofana is one of 13 changes made by Saint-Andre to his starting line-up against Italy but the only one who is realistically in line to begin the final and potentially table-topping clash with Six Nations champions Ireland in Cardiff on October 11.

However, Fofana echoed Saint-Andre's mantra for the game that he did not want to see individuals going for glory but a good all round team performance with each player playing for the others.

"I would say the main objective is a team one not a personal one," he said.

"We will respect this team and are eager to put together a superb team performance.

"It is by performing well as a unit the individual qualities will come to the surface."



Brice Dulin Sofiane Guitoune, Gael Fickou, Wesley Fofana, Noa Nakaitaci, Remi Tales, Morgan Parra, Louis Picamoles, Fulgence Ouedraogo, Yannick Nyanga, Alexandre Flanquart, Bernard Le Roux, Uini Atonio, Dimitri Szarzewski (capt), Vincent Debaty

Replacements: Benjamin Kayser, Eddy Ben Arous, Nicolas Mas, Yoann Maestri, Damien Chouly, Rory Kockott, Frederic Michalak, Mathieu Bastareaud


Catalin Fercu Madalin Lemnaru, Paula Kinikinilau, Florin Vlaicu, Adrian Apostol, Danut Dumbrava, Florin Surugiu, Mihai Macovei (capt), Viorel Lucaci, Valentin Ursache, Johannes van Heerden, Valentin Poparlan, Paulica Ion, Otar Turashvili, Mihaita Lazar

Replacements: Andrei Radoi, Andrei Ursache, Horatiu Pungea, Ovidiu Tonita, Stelian Burcea, Valentin Calafeteanu, Ionut Botezatu, Csaba Gal

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