Internal strife in French camp

Sun, 08 Jun 2014 07:46
I think we panicked

The French team's Australian campaign went from bad to worse in the wake of their 50-point thumping at the hands of the Wallabies at the weekend.

It has emerged that there appears to be factions and internal strife in the camp.

At the very least the French coach and captain publicly disagreed with each other over whether Les Bleus panicked during their humiliating loss to a rampant Australian outfit in the first Test in Brisbane.

Coach Philippe Saint-Andre conceded fear got the best of the visitors as the Wallabies thrashed the French 50-23, with two late tries ensuring the scoreline flattered the tourists.

"Australia were physical, but with a fair bit of urgency," Saint-Andre said.

"I think we panicked too much.

"Sometimes we needed to play to the space in our game, and not try to do too much against the speed of Australia."

But French stand-in captain Nicolas Mas disagreed with his coach, saying he didn't think panic had cost them the game.

"It's not a question of panicking - when the team was in a position to convert pressure into points we were making errors," he said.

"We have to continue to work at that and eliminate errors when we've got an opportunity to score."

France were without a number of key players for the opening Test, including captain Thierry Dusautoir and form No.8 Louis Picamoles.