France opt with Doussain for Wallabies test

Thu, 17 Nov 2016 10:12
Large jean marc doussain

TEAM ANNOUNCEMENT: France coach Guy Noves has made five changes to the side who will take on a very confident Australia side at the Stade de France on Saturday.

France will head into this match really wary of Michael Cheika's side despite their 52-8 thrashing of Samoa last week.

With the injury of first-choice flyhalf François Trinh-Duc, Jean-Marc Doussain has been giving the opportunity to don the flyhalf jersey and Camille Lopez drafted onto the bench.

In-form Clermont winger Noa Nakaitaci is named in the number 14 shirt, meaning an all-Fijian wing line-up alongside Virimi Vakatawa, a scorer of a hat-trick of tries in last week's

The back three is completed by another foreigner in South African-born Scott Spedding, with fellow Clermont teammates Remi Lamerat and Wesley Fofana in midfield.

Among the forwards, Toulon's Charles Ollivon replaces the injured Loann Goujon at blindside, while Sebastien Vahaamahina starts at lock alongside Yoann Maestri after putting in an impressive cameo performance off the bench against the Samoans.

No.8 Louis Picamoles and openside Kevin Gourdan both start after having been rested in the week.

Cyrille Baille gets his first run-on for the Tricolors at loosehead prop alongside hooker and captain Guilhem Guirado and New Zealand-born tighthead Uini Atonio.

Noves said it was logical for Doussain to start alongside Machenaud.

"He played well when he came on last week even if the match seemed easy and Camille joined up with us on Monday, he's still discovering the France team's gameplan," the former long-time Toulouse coach said.

Noves bristled when questioned over the selection of two Fijians on the wings.

"It's a strange question," he chided. "I don't know if they have something extra.

"Virimi, what he has extra you saw it against Samoa. As for Noa, you must have taken note of him over recent weeks.

"They're players who are great one-on-one, who have a step, who make the difference but there are other French players who have those qualities,"

France: 15 Scott Spedding, 14 Noa Nakaitaci, 13 Remi Lamerat, 12 Wesley Fofana, 11 Virimi Vakatawa, 10 Jean-Marc Doussain, 9 Maxime Machenaud, 8 Louis Picamoles, 7 Kevin Gourdon, 6 Charles Ollivon, 5 Yoann Maestri, 4 Sebastien Vahaamahina, 3 Uini Atonio, 2 Guilhem Guirado (captain), 1  Cyrille Baille
Replacements: 16 Camille Chat, 17 Xavier Chiocci, 18 Rabah Slimani, 19 Julien Le Devedec, 20 Damien Chouly, 21 Baptiste Serin, 22 Camille Lopez, 23 Gael Fickou.

Date: Saturday, November 19
Venue: Stade de France, France
Kick-off: 21.00 (20.00 GMT; 06.00 AEDT Sunday, November 20)
Referee: Glen Jackson (New Zealand)
Assistant referees: Wayne Barnes (England), Greg Garner (England)
TMO: Graham Hughes (England)

Agence France-Presse