The Six Nations and the endless barn of French rugby| The USA Print

The Six Nations and the endless barn of French rugby

After years trying to build a house from the roof, France understood that to dominate the world, he had to first put order in his own house. That the XV del Gallo is a favorite in betting to win its World Cup at the end of October responds to a slow process based on the bottom of the closet and an agreement between the federation and the league, the most lucrative in the world. Rare is the party in which a new puppy does not debut with the blues. It happened again this Sunday in Rome – it was the turn of Ethan Dumortier, who has emerged as a scorer in the Top 14 – in the staging of the reigning Six Nations champion, who suffered tremendously against the Cinderella and they avoided the catastrophe thanks to their substitutes (24-29).

In his fallow period – a 12-year drought without winning the Six Nations – the XV del Gallo was fighting against his league. The culmination occurred in 2020, with a match against England without the starting team because the clubs did not give up their players. Peace came with two precepts: the Federation requires a minimum of 16 players trained in France from the clubs and compensates them for using them with the national team. The result is that Fabien Galthié has a pool of 42 players to choose from. That has allowed him to summon players who are active in the second category who are now permanent.

For a team that hasn’t lost since 2021, Italy presented an unexpected challenge. France did not need to open the jar of essences, they limited themselves to punishing the mistakes of a rival that cemented their attempt at rebellion in the risk with the ball. It was the only scenario to dismast a granite defense. The plan was blown up after four minutes when Thibaud Flament blocked Stephen Varney’s kick and scored the first try. Effortless revenue, an incentive for complacency.

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With the game going against the current, Italy could not afford mistakes, but the French pressure imposes and Romain Ntamack’s leg creates uncomfortable situations. One of those balls landed in the local goal area while Damien Penaud and Ange Capuozzo went to meet him; they collided without luck and it was Ramos who picked up the ball for the second French trial. Ntamack himself made the third with a kick to the left wing that reached Dumortier’s hands as if it were a two-meter pass. The wing processed a play and signed his debut with an essay.

After conceding three tries in less than half an hour, Italy kept their composure waiting for Capuozzo to show up. The great architect of the victory test in Wales – one of the best records in the history of the tournament was worth the first Italian victory since 2015 – broke the French corset and broke Gregory Alldritt, the great boss of his defense, with his snatch. The locals not only went alive at halftime (14-19), but they went further. They came close to one after a penalty test after Charles Ollivon knocked down the Italian platform when he was already in sight of the mark zone. Italy was one and had ten minutes of numerical superiority that Allan took advantage of to put his team ahead. All alarms on.

It was a difficult time to relieve two sacred cows, but Galthie did it. Alldritt and Ntamack left the match with their team on the ropes. He already confirmed. It was the substitute fly half, Matthieu Jalibert, one of the Golden Boy of French rugby surpassed by the expectations of others, who did the victory test after continuing the stampede of Romain Taofifenua.

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Italy fights its sidekick label with an undeniable but insufficient improvement to break the gap with the greats. It has the best U-20 generation in its history, but it faced the country that has won the last two World Cups in the category. It was his most worthy defeat, dying in the French 22 with time served. A scare of the first order for France, who came out unscathed, with his victory and his offensive bonus point from the four trials. A nondescript version with which he should not appear in Dublin on Saturday if he wants to defend his title.

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