France name Fijian-born wings to face Wallabies

2016-11-17 11:48
Jean-Marc Doussain

Paris - France coach Guy Noves has made five changes to his team which thrashed Samoa to play Australia at the Stade de France on Saturday.

Kick-off is at 22:00 (SA time).

Jean-Marc Doussain comes in at flyhalf in place of the injured Francois Trinh-Duc, with Camille Lopez drafted onto the bench.

In-form Clermont wing Noa Nakaitaci is named in the No 14 shirt, meaning an all-Fijian wing line-up alongside Virimi Vakatawa, a scorer of a hat-trick of tries in last week's 52-8 victory over Samoa.

The back three is completed by another foreigner in South African-born Scott Spedding, with fellow Clermont team-mates Remi Lamerat and Wesley Fofana in midfield.

Among the forwards, Toulon's Charles Ollivon replaces the injured Loann Goujon at blindside, while Sebastien Vahaamahina starts at lock alongside Yoann Maestri after putting in an impressive cameo performance off the bench against the Samoans. No 8 Louis Picamoles and openside Kevin Gourdan both start after having been rested in the week.

Cyrille Baille gets his first run-on for the Tricolors at loosehead prop alongside hooker and captain Guilhem Guirado and New Zealand-born tighthead Uini Atonio.

Noves said it was logical for Doussain to start alongside Machenaud.

"He played well when he came on last week even if the match seemed easy and Camille joined up with us on Monday, he's still discovering the France team's gameplan," the former long-time Toulouse coach said.

Noves bristled when questioned over the selection of two Fijians on the wings.

"It's a strange question," he chided. "I don't know if they have something extra.

"Virimi, what he has extra you saw it against Samoa. As for Noa, you must have taken note of him over recent weeks.

"They're players who are great one-on-one, who have a step, who make the difference but there are other French players who have those qualities."



15 Scott Spedding, 14 Noa Nakaitaci, 13 Rémi Lamerat, 12 Wesley Fofana, 11 Virimi Vakatawa, 10 Jean-Marc Doussain, 9 Maxime Machenaud, 8 Louis Picamoles, 7 Kévin Gourdon, 6 Charles Ollivon, 5 Yoann Maestri, 4 Sébastian Vahaamahina, 3 Uini Atonio, 2 Guilhelm Guirado (captain), 1 Cyril Baille

Substitutes: 16 Camille Chat, 17 Xavier Chiocci, 18 Rabah Slimani, 19 Julien Le Devedec, 20 Damien Chouly, 21 Baptiste Serin, 22 Camille Lopez, 23 Gaël Fickou



Read more on:    wallabies  |  france  |  rugby


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