At 30, the third line of the XV of France to 63 selections Safi N'Diaye rejoices in the double clash against New Zealanders: this Friday in Toulon (21 hours, France 4) and November 17 (14:30, France 2 ) in Grenoble. After the tremendous Grand Slam at the last Six Nations Tournament, the Montpellier, also a specialist educator, welcomes the evolution of her sport.
How much do you expect these two games against the New Zealand women world champions?
SAFI N'DIAYE. We talk about it since the day after the 2017 World Cup (Note: France finished 3rd) ! We are really looking forward to being there and being able to let go of the horses. Since we have not met since the 2010 World Cup, it's going to be a real test.
In the provinces, you are a bit like queens?
(Laughter) It is true that we have a great welcome (Note: 17,400 spectators for the Grand Slam match in Grenoble in March, world record). We have an audience more and more faithful.
The second match will be broadcast on France 2. Is it important?
The number of licensees is only increasing (Note: 20,000 players, + 29% in one year). So more equal visibility maybe more girls who will want to try rugby one day. This is a reward that shows that we are proposing a game that is more and more attractive.
What does the signature of the first federal professional contracts change in September?
This is a very important step. I went from 39 hours a week to 20 hours! It completely changes my life. There, we can train more efficiently, better recover, even if we still have lives at 200 per hour.
The recent meeting with Roxana Maracineanu in Marcoussis showed that there were still some delicate situations …
Yes, there are still special cases where you have to work with the schools, the employers. But this is only the beginning and we are also working for future generations, so that they are in the best possible conditions. I am very optimistic. Mr Laporte (Editor's note: President of the FFR) said that women's rugby was a priority. And the acts come behind the lyrics, so it's great.
What does your nomination for the title of World Player of the Year represent?
It's a great reward. When I see that there are four French women (Note: with Jessy Trémoulière, Pauline Bourdon and Gaëlle Hermet) on the five named, it is hyperpositive. It encourages people who work in clubs and gives models to small ones in rugby schools.
And you stay supportive of boys?
Of course. If boys win, all French rugby wins. We are all in the same ship.