Huget: France will finish on a high
March 15, 2013
Yoann Huget is determined to finish the championships on a positive note © Getty Images
France fullback Yoann Huget insists Les Bleus will take on Scotland in confident mood - despite staring down the barrel at the Six Nations wooden spoon.
Philippe Saint-Andre's team have failed to win any of their four fixtures so far in this year's competition. But Toulouse wing Huget - who has stood in at number 15 in place of the injured Brice Dulin - believes the fightback from 13-3 down to draw 13-13 against Ireland in Dublin last time out has lifted sagging morale and set up the side for tomorrow's meeting with the Dark Blues in Paris.
"The draw was good for our morale. We were 13-3 away from home and at international level it's very hard to get back into a game," he said. "If we'd had five more minutes and had been a little bit more patient then we could have done even better. But for now we have to be humble and continue to work hard.
"The tournament started badly but we want to finish well. For the staff that have trusted us from the beginning, we would like to come through the match and give them a bit more relief than they had after the first four matches, in which we haven't made life easy for them. If we get through against Scotland then everything will be reset to zero. For now, I just want to focus on the last game.
"I'm just working hard with the staff on adjusting to my new position at the back, from which I've already taken a lot of pleasure and am enjoying more and more."
While the French will be faced with their worst campaign since 1957 if they fail to beat the Scots at the Stade de France, their opponents are looking to bounce back from their own wooden spoon experience of 12 months ago by finishing in second place.
For that they need their first victory on French soil since 1999 and a convincing England triumph in their Championship decider against Wales in Cardiff. With that in mind, Huget is cautious.
"Scotland are a team that adapts to the conditions, like France. They are certainly less open than in recent years but are a lot tighter and have more sturdy players," he told www.rugbynews.fr. "We will try to get a grip on the game and counter the Scots as best as we can, as early as possible, to give us the best chance of winning."
Conditions in the French capital are more akin to the weather you would expect in the Dark Blues' homeland, but Huget believes the hosts can provide some spring joy their success-starved home supporters, who have already seen their side lose to Italy and Wales in Saint-Denis this year.
"We will try to warm them up and make sure they're not disappointed for a third time," Huget said. "I was told it would be fine on Monday, but on Thursday they told me it's going to rain. Maybe it will even snow. But if we do get a chance to fight back, to play our game, then we will do so because it gives us pleasure."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
Ireland have the world sitting up and taking notice - and rugby's structure in Europe will aid their Rugby World Cup bid, writes John Mitchell
Where does Italy's win over Scotland rank among their successes in the Six Nations? Scrum Sevens investigates
The tone was set early on in Dublin as a more clinical Ireland made England pay. All is not lost, however, argues Phil Vickery
Monday Maul takes in retirement talk, England reshuffles, France's unfair advantage and Scotland's communication breakdown