The meeting promised to be tense, but we did not know that she would smell the powder. Was it the effect of the pyrotechnic deployment before the match at the Stade de France? Still, a quarter of an hour had not passed, Sunday, February 26, that France and Scotland invented rugby fourteenth. Two red cards – French right prop Mohammed Haouas “responding” to Scottish second row Grant Gilchrist – tipped the third part of the Six Nations Tournament into uncertainty. At the end of a hung and unbridled match, the XV of France won against a playful Scottish team, conquering the offensive bonus on the wire (32-21). Two weeks after their defeat in Ireland, Antoine Dupont’s teammates are back to winning ways.
“The theme was falling and getting up. And that was it, in a match with a difficult scenario”welcomed the tricolor coach, Fabien Galthié, after the game, recalling that two years earlier, Scotland had won in extremis at the Stade de France – the last defeat of the Blues before that of Dublin a fortnight ago . “We had lost on the last action; this time we went for the victory with the offensive bonus”. What does it matter “the scenario of the match or its content”the French technician wanted to savor the result.
Opposed to an opponent in full confidence after two improved successes in England and against Wales – their best start to the Tournament since 1996 – the Blues wanted to restart the forward march. “We had a little pressure before this match, but it was good pressure because the group was keen to redeem themselves from our defeat in Ireland”, blew winger Ethan Dumortier. And in a crowded Stade de France, whose chills were as much due to the gestures of the players as to the bites of the icy wind, the Blues got off to an ideal start.
“The whole match was a question of adaptation”
In the first twenty minutes, the three French incursions into the opposing 22 meters were rewarded with a try. First by Romain Ntamack, found by Antoine Dupont following a big three-color playing time near the Scottish line. Then, when the Toulouse opener perfectly shifted Ethan Dumortier on the wing; and finally when Thomas Ramos intercepted, in his camp, a daring pass from Finn Russell to cross the field and go to register the third French try.
“We play a game where everything is controlled, we lead 19-0 and there is a red card against them. Then there is this action that leads to our red card, and we had to adapt, rewound Faben Galthié. From there, the whole game was about adapting. » Because the Scots did not let themselves be defeated by the major opening of the Blues, or the facts of the game.
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