Lievremont content after improved display
September 18, 2011
Damien Traille is congratulated after his breakthrough try against the Canucks © Getty Images
France head coach Marc Lievremont announced himself "satisfied" with side's performance in Sunday's 46-19 win over Canada in Napier.
Lievremeont slated his players after last weekend's 47-21 victory over Japan but he was much more pleased with their efforts in difficult conditions at McLean Park.
Les Bleus started strongly, with Vincent Clerc bagging a try just four minutes in. However, Canada posted an immediate riposte through Ryan Smith and caused France all sorts problems thereafter, the goal-kicking of Morgan Parra the only thing keeping the Canucks at arm's length.
France cut loose in the final quarter, though, with Damien Traille bursting through to score before Clerc helped himself to two more tries.
"I'm happy, of course," Lievremont said. "I was annoyed last week and I said so. I'm not going to be unhappy after every game. We got a bonus point, and that is just reward for the team and the fans who supported us. That's not to say that everything was perfect, I got a bit annoyed but in general I'm satisfied."
Lievremont admitted that his side had struggled in the opening 40 minutes but was reluctant to use the heavy rain as an excuse for their underwhelming performance.
"It certainly had an impact but the Canadians had the same conditions as us and they got into the game much better that we did," he said.
Meanwhile, Canada hooker Pat Riordan admitted that he and his team-mates were devastated by the fact that they had faded in the final quarter, thus blowing a glorious chance to spring one of the biggest surprises in World Cup history.
"If nothing else we showed we can live with the top teams but a lot of the guys are heartbroken," he said. "I think that shows the expectations we have for ourselves.
"A lot of people are making a big deal about the turnaround for the tier-two teams. We came with the attitude: 'Who says you can't play two games in four days?'"
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