It is win at all cost for France

Tue, 05 Mar 2013 20:21
Large thierry dusautoir six natio Large tierry dusautoir   sergio p Large thierry dusautoir france2

Thierry Dusautoir says France must do whatever it takes to beat Ireland in their Six Nations clash in Dublin on Saturday

France must do whatever it takes to beat Ireland in their Six Nations clash in Dublin on Saturday and ease the pressure on them landing their first wooden spoon since 1957, captain Thierry Dusautoir has demanded.

The French have made their worst start to a Five/Six Nations since 1982 in losing their first three matches, and are the only side still to record a point.

But they travel to Dublin at least in the knowledge they have lost only once to their opponents in their last 13 Tests - the Irish Grand Slam in 2009.

Dusautoir, though, said he couldn't countenance the thought of defeat.

"I prefer not to even think about it, even if it is always a possible outcome in sport," said the 31-year-old Toulouse flank.

"It is something that one doesn't want to envisage and we are going to do everything in our power to make sure it doesn't happen.

"There is the fierce pride to show that we are a team of good rugby players.

"At the end of the day it is imperative we win. The French team was often criticised because it won ugly, but at the same time it won.

"We are painfully aware that the victory, whatever the manner of it, is really important. Today we are really hungry to win, whatever it costs."

The Ivory Coast-born France skipper, son of a French father and an Ivorian mother, said that the present squad was not lacking in guts and determination, contrary to what many of their critics and former players have said.

"I think this squad has character and is going to show it," said Dusautoir, who has earned the sobriquet the 'Dark Destroyer' for his fierce tackling.

"In our first match, without taking away from the Italian performance [a 18-23 defeat], we let the match drift past us, the second (a 6-16 home loss to Wales) was a real hard-fought tussle until we lost in the 72nd minute [conceding the only try of the match] and the third [a 13-23 defeat against England], we lost our way in the second half.

"For each match there is an explanation as to why we lost. It is vital we start putting together all the good factors and produce a perfect match because that is what is asked of you to win at the highest level."

Dusautoir was not the original choice as skipper for the Six Nations as Philippe Saint-Andre opted to give him more time to recover his playing form and chose Pascal Pape instead, before the lock suffered a tournament-ending injury against Italy.

And he said that for the young squad the poor run was a new experience after the high of winning their three November tests.

"This squad is different to the one that played in the last World Cup," said Dusautoir, who skippered the French to their 7-8 defeat at the hands of the All Blacks in the 2011 World Cup Final.

"It is in the middle of experiencing its first tough patch, it is something new for them.

"This squad is at the moment trying to go into hiding at difficult moments.

"It is crucial that the players show they have the resources to react to such crises. There are lots of young players who have only known the good side of international rugby. With victories and the ensuing eulogies, life is a lot simpler.

"Today the opposite is the case. These are the two extremes that one gets acquainted with at this level. To know what both of them are like is not too serious.

"The important thing is to know how to get back up off the canvas. They're currently in the process of building up experience and character.”

AFP

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FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Sat, 13 February 2016
Treviso v Cardiff Blues 12h30 Stadio Comunale di Monigo
France v Ireland 14h25 Paris
Sale Sharks v Exeter Chiefs 14h30 AJ Bell Stadium
Gloucester v Harlequins 15h00 Kingsholm
Northampton Saints v London Irish 15h00 Franklin's Gardens
Worcester Warriors v Bath 15h00 Sixways
Wales v Scotland 16h50 Cardiff
Sun, 14 February 2016
Italy v England 14h00 Rome
Saracens v Wasps 16h00 Allianz Park
Munster v Ospreys 17h00 Irish Independent Park
Mon, 15 February 2016
NMMU-Madibaz v Maties 14h45 Port Elizabeth
CUT-Ixias v UCT-Ikeys 16h30 Bloemfontein
UKZN-Impi v Fort Hare 16h30 Pietermaritzburg
TUT v UWC 16h30 Pretoria
UP-Tuks v Shimlas 16h30 Pretoria
NWU-Pukke v UJ 17h00 Potchefstroom
Thu, 18 February 2016
TUT v UKZN-Impi 16h30 Pretoria
Fort Hare v Wits 16h30 East London
Fri, 19 February 2016
Zebre v Leinster 22h00 Stadio Sergio Lanfranchi
RESULT SCORE
Fri, 12 February 2016
Scarlets v Edinburgh 22 | 21
Newcastle Falcons v Leicester Tigers 26 | 14
Leinster v Zebre 52 | 0
Ulster v Glasgow Warriors 13 | 10
Thu, 11 February 2016
Dragons v Connacht 21 | 26
Mon, 08 February 2016
UCT-Ikeys v Shimlas 17 | 23
UJ v NMMU-Madibaz 19 | 12
Maties v CUT-Ixias 40 | 0
UWC v UKZN-Impi 13 | 24
Wits v TUT 53 | 0
UP-Tuks v NWU-Pukke 15 | 38
Sun, 07 February 2016
Ireland v Wales 16 | 16
Exeter Chiefs v Saracens 11 | 14
London Irish v Worcester Warriors 20 | 13
Sat, 06 February 2016
Scotland v England 9 | 15
SIX NATIONS
MORE LOGS
Team P W D L Pts
England 1 1 0 0 2
France 1 1 0 0 2
Ireland 1 0 1 0 1
Wales 1 0 1 0 1
Italy 1 0 0 1 0
Scotland 1 0 0 1 0