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The Blues beat the Welsh on Saturday (41-28) with the offensive bonus, sometimes showing themselves to be rough in this meeting punctuated by 9 tries. France is now awaiting the result of the Ireland – England match to know its final ranking in this edition of the Six Nations Tournament.
The contract is completed for the Blues who beat with the offensive bonus (41-28), Saturday March 18, at the Stade de France, the Wales team, thus pocketing 5 precious points which can still allow French players to win this edition of the Six Nations Tournament, if ever Ireland loses heavily against England in the last match of this competition.
This scenario seems very unlikely as Ireland, in the race for a Grand Slam, shines in this edition of the Tournament and should not miss the opportunity to be able to celebrate a Grand Slam at home, beating the English rolled over the weekend. end last by the French.
The French, authors of a Grand Slam in the previous edition, will therefore probably have to settle for a second place this year. The program promised to be more difficult in this 2023 edition since they had three trips to make, including one to Dublin against the formidable Ireland, the world’s first nation at present. They suffered a logical defeat there (32-19) which reminded them of how formidable this Irish team will be during the World Cup.
Facing the Welsh, the French will have had to wait 10 minutes to finally enter the 50 opposing meters. After an early game to the advantage of their opponents, rewarded by a try from George North in the 8th minute, the French reacted very quickly. Two minutes later, opener Romain Ntamack set fire to the Welsh defense and offered his ball to Antoine Dupont who, with a long pass, served Damian Penaud. Alone on his wing, he could quietly score the first try of the Blues, transformed by Thomas Ramos (7-7).
Radiant last week against England, the Blues had more difficulty controlling this match. They struggled to contain the offensive tendencies of the Welsh, eager to end their disappointing Tournament, punctuated by a single victory in Italy, with a feat against the Blues.
Warren Gatland, the Welsh coach, had bet for this meeting on the experience of his old grognards, in particular by aligning the second line Alun Wyn Jones who was playing his 159th selection in the jersey of Leek XV.
A double from Damian Penaud
The Blues took the lead in the score in the 27th minute thanks to a penalty scored by Thomas Ramos (10-7). Two minutes later, the domination of the French in scrum, sanctioned by referee Nic Berry, allowed him to register 3 more points.
The domination of the Blues increased over the course of the meeting, three-quarters of France expressing their desire to ignite this meeting. Their efforts were rewarded in the 34th minute with a try from Jonathan Danty at the end of the line, transformed by Thomas Ramos (20-7). An action hailed by the public of the Stade de France who rewarded the French team with a Marseillaise.
After half-time, the French resumed the match at the same pace, their coach Fabien Galthié wishing to see them achieve a better second period. And his men, who had been given their jerseys on Friday by Bernard Laporte – forced to resign from the presidency of the Rugby Federation after his conviction for corruption – listened to him.
The French stunned the Welsh in five minutes: the pillar Uini Atonio scored a try in the 44th minute – his first in 50 selections – and Gaël Fickou also flattened the ball in the opposing goal in the 49th. With two conversions from Ramos, the Blues led 34-7.
Their wide lead, however, was reduced in the 55th minute after a try from Welshman Bradley Robberts, converted by opener Dan Biggar, a player who plays in the French championship under the colors of RC Toulon. Reinvigorated Welsh who again scored in the 65th minute, the test of Tomos Williams, transformed by Biggar, allowing them to be only 13 points behind (34-21).
Fresher in the last quarter of an hour, the French ended this meeting better, offering themselves a last try in the 78th minute scored by Damian Penaud. Thomas Ramos succeeded in the conversion and thus signed a 100% on foot. The Welsh, however, took care of closing the score of this meeting, with a last try from Rio Dyer transformed by Leigh Halfpenny (41-28).