This is the best way to get started before the big clash scheduled for next week against England. Without forcing too much, the women’s XV of France started its World Cup nicely, dominating, on Saturday October 8, South Africa with a net score of 40-5, at Eden Park in Auckland (New Zealand). ) in the opening match of the competition.
Les Bleues, poured into Pool C, scored six tries, including a double from their scrum half Laure Sansus, named “player of the match”. They thus give themselves a precious bonus point in the race for the classification with a view to the quarter-finals.
The objective of the French team is to break its glass ceiling and reach the final in a competition where it has never done better than third (six times in eight editions!). But the path is likely to be difficult, especially against nations like England or New Zealand. Respectively first and second in the international rankings, the two teams have shared seven of the eight titles since the creation of the competition in 1991.
Gaëlle Mignot, the assistant coach of the French women in charge of the scrum and attitudes in contact, had warned on Friday: “We want to enter the competition in the best possible way. »
“What matters is to set up our game, to mark the spirits, the opponentshe added.. And to send a strong signal to everyone by saying “we are very present and we want to go as far as possible.” »
Strong start then drop in pace
Basically, mission accomplished, but on the form it will raise the level of play against the English Red Roses. Les Bleues would benefit in particular from adjusting a few details, and from letting go more in order to take advantage of the smallest space.
In a sold-out Eden Park and under a beautiful sun, the French quickly scored three tries in fifteen minutes before lowering the pace. The first, a trickster test from the 2nde minute of the meeting, is signed Laure Sansus, the second is the work of center Gabrielle Vernier (11e), following a small kick from opener Caroline Drouin, and finally, the third came on an interception by Emilie Boulard (17e).
But, while the Habs benefited from a numerical superiority after a yellow card addressed to the third line of the Women Boks Sizophila Solontsi in the 29e, they failed to materialize, chaining errors and approximations. This weak time on the French side continued after the break, the Bleues conceding a try, signed by the South African winger Nomawethu Mabenge (50e).
Despite a long time spent in the camp of the Boks, the Blue, by Laure Sansus again, had to wait for the 67e minute to score their fourth try, synonymous with an offensive bonus, before Caroline Drouin, then the sevenist Joanna Grisez, worsened the score.
“We took the points, that’s the main thing”analyzed Laure Sansus at the final whistle, at the microphone of TF1. “Physically, [les Sud-Africaines] were very harsh, they attacked us, they hurt us. So yes, it’s a good performance because we won, but I think the content is not satisfactory yet.added the scrum half of the Blues.
The gaze now turns to Saturday October 15 and this long-awaited duel against the English. Before concluding the first round, the following Saturday, against Fiji.