All change for Les Bleus
September 12, 2011
Francois Trinh-Duc, a try-scorer against the Japanese, has retained his place in the starting line-up © Getty Images
France head coach Marc Lievremont has rung the changes for his side's Rugby World Cup Pool A clash with Canada in Napier on Sunday.
Les Bleus kicked off their campaign with a underwhelming 47-21 victory over Japan on Saturday, with a disappointed Lievremont admitting that a massive improvement was required in their clash with the Canucks and he has responded to the dismal display by retaining the services of just four of the players who started against the Cherry Blossoms.
There is just one survivor in the pack, with William Servat holding on to the No.2 jersey. The Toulouse hooker will be joined in the front-row this weekend by Jean-Baptiste Poux and Luc Ducalcon, with Fabien Barcella and Nicolas Mas the men to make way. Pascal Pape and Romain Millo-Chluski come in for Julien Pierre and Lionel Nallet in the second-row, while Fulgence Ouedraogo, Julien Bonnaire and Louis Picamoles replace Thierry Dusautoir, Imanol Harinordoquy and Raphael Lakafia at the base of the scrum.
Vincent Clerc, Aurelien Ruougerie and Francois Trinh-Duc have all retained their places in the back-line. However, Rougerie, who will act as captain in the absence of regular skipper Dusautoir, has been moved from the centre to the left wing, taking the place of Maxime Medard. David Marty and his fit-again Perpignan team-mate Maxime Mermoz have been paired together in midfield, while Damien Traille will line up at fullback, with Cedric Heymans having been dropped from the 22. Traille will also serve as cover for Trinh-Duc as David Skrela, who picked up a serious shoulder injury on Saturday, misses out altogether.
There is a seat on the bench, though, for Fabrice Estebanez, with the centre having made a swift recovery from the back injury he sustained against the Japanese.
France: Damien Traille; Vincent Clerc, David Marty, Maxime Mermoz, Aurelien Rougerie (capt); Francois Trinh-Duc, Morgan Parra; Jean-Baptiste Poux, William Servat, Luc Ducalcon; Pascal Pape, Romain Millo-Chluski; Fulgence Ouedraogo, Julien Bonnaire, Louis Picamoles.
Replacements: Guilhem Guirado, Fabien Barcella, Julien Pierre, Imanol Harinordoquy, Dimitri Yachvili, Fabrice Estebanez, Maxime Medard.
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