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U20 : Comment expliquer les huit changements de la France face au Pays de Galles

Par Willy Billiard
LE CAP, AFRIQUE DU SUD - 4 JUILLET : Morgan Morse (Pays de Galles U20) lors du Championnat U20 World Rugby 2023, match de poule A entre la France et le Pays de Galles au Athlone Stadium, le 4 juillet 2023 au Cap, en Afrique du Sud. (Photo par World Rugby/World Rugby via Getty Images)

Pour son dernier match de poule du Championnat du Monde en Afrique du Sud mardi 9 juillet, le staff de l’équipe de France U20 a décidé de renouveler son effectif en profondeur avec huit changements.

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Contre la Nouvelle-Zélande, on ne comptait que la moitié des changements par rapport au match inaugural face à l’Espagne.

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Cette fois, la rotation s’explique de plusieurs manières. Première explication, la défaite d’un point (26-27) contre la Nouvelle-Zélande le 4 juillet a fait des dégâts. Blessé au genou gauche après le premier quart d’heure de la rencontre, le pilier droit Zinédine Aouad est forfait pour la suite. Son remplaçant d’alors, Thomas Duchêne, est nommé titulaire. Il vient renforcer une première-ligne toute neuve avec le pilier gauche Samuel Jean-Christophe et le talonneur Thomas Lacombre qui n’ont pas encore joué.

Autre victime du match contre les Junior All Blacks, le deuxième-ligne Charles Kante-Samba, sorti sur blessure à la 36e minute, qui a subi un protocole commotion le rendant inéligible sur cette prochaine rencontre face au Pays de Galles. Il est remplacé par Charly Gambini, tout juste arrivé en Afrique du Sud, alors qu’il était en vacances, mais respectant un programme individuel.

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Le deuxième-ligne de Provence Rugby faisait partie d’une liste cachée de 52 joueurs considérés comme réservistes pouvant être mobilisés à tout moment.

« C’est la compétition qui nous amène à faire ces choix de dernière minute », justifie le manager Sébastien Calvet. « Son arrivée est de nous apporter un plus dans cet alignement qui nous pose défaut et lui, c’est son point fort. Autant sa qualité de sauteur, de compréhension de sa touche mais aussi sa capacité d’être leader de la touche. Le besoin immédiat est d’avoir un surplus de compétence dans l’alignement.

« A un moment donné, il faut aussi de la fraîcheur. Si on se qualifie en demi-finale, c’est d’avoir aussi la capacité d’aller faire des gros matchs, d’abord en demi-finale. On est obligé dans le management d’amener et de faire confiance à ceux qui n’ont pas encore joué. »

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C’est le cas de la première-ligne développée ci-dessus, mais aussi du trois-quarts centre Robin Taccola (tellement performant sur le Six Nations) qui sera titulaire, mais aussi du talonneur Mathys Lotrian et du pilier droit Thomas Marceline envoyés sur le banc.

« C’est l’occasion de montrer qu’un groupe c’est 30 et on a besoin de faire avec ces joueurs-là », affirme Calvet.

D’où la présence sur le banc des valeurs sûres Léo Carbonneau, Geoffrey Malaterre, Lino Julien, Antonin Corso, Alexis Caumel et Maxence Biasotto.

L’équipe de France U20 contre le Pays de Galles

  1. Samuel Jean-Christophe
  2. Thomas Lacombre
  3. Thomas Duchêne
  4. Charly Gambini
  5. Corentin Mézou
  6. Joé Quere Karaba
  7. Sialevailea Tolofua
  8. Mathis Castro-Ferreira
  9. Thomas Souverbie
  10. Hugo Reus (capitaine)
  11. Hoani Bosmorin
  12. Robin Taccola
  13. Fabien Brau-Boirie
  14. Nathan Bollengier
  15. Mathis FertéRemplaçants
  16. Mathys Lotrian
  17. Lino Julien
  18. Thomas Marceline
  19. Antonin Corso
  20. Geoffrey Malaterre
  21. Alexis Caumel
  22. Léo Carbonneau
  23. Maxence Biasotto

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Wonton 2 hours ago
Why Scott Robertson may need to ease big names aside for All Blacks' flexibility

One game against Fiji is not enough to show that a player is ready to play the likes of South Africa. Spreading the ball wide too much increases the risk of turnovers and we turned the ball over 20 times against Fiji which is a lot more than what we did in the two England tests. We actually turned the ball over the same amount of times (20) against England in the 2019 semi final which we lost. Fiji didn’t make us pay for those turnovers but other teams will. In the 2nd test against England this year we had 100% success rate on attacking rucks. That’s the first time the AB’s have achieved this since the 2019 opening game of the RWC against South Africa. South Africa won last years RWC and Jesse Kriel did not pass once. The days of the Conrad Smith type centre might be over. Also Conrad Smith debuted in 2004 but he did not become an incumbent until Nonu did also in 2008. As for Rieko Ioane he and Jordie Barrett put in some very strong midfield hits in the 2nd test forcing turnovers several times. Rieko Ioane hasn’t played wing in years. If Proctor is moved to 13 then the best I think Ioane can hope for is an impact player off the bench. He does not have the aerial game of Caleb Clarke or the workrate of Tele’a for 11 and going to be selected over Jordan at 14. However its much too early to replace Rieko with Proctor. Rieko was excellent in the knock out rounds of the RWC. All Proctor has to show on his test CV is a good game against Fiji.

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Nick 3 hours ago
How 'gazelle' Nick Frost thawed the hearts of Wallaby fans at Suncorp

Its almost like you read my comment on the other site on sunday morning Nick - you flagged all the same examples! 😝 Frost was motm for mine. That eg in the 56th minute in particular impressed me, nothing but sheer effort and a dupont/smith-like tracking line behind the D. Surely an effort like that from frost marries perfectly with that quote from schmidt at the start of the year about effort and work rate being 70-80% and talent is just the icing on top… What it also showed though was the players not making that effort, in that example he goes past both valetini and ikitau, and in the eg that finished with valetini scoring hunter paisami barely breaks a canter to support the break. And then there was the chase from wright and lancaster for the 2nd georgian try! One blemish - at kickoff I saw frost miss or get bumped off a few tackles and I felt like I saw what has been holding his selection back. I think because he is so big and is trying to get low to tackle, he seems to dip his head and ends up losing his balance or ability to adjust and ends up missing or making a soft hit. I think in the first 2 minutes he misses or makes 2-3 soft tackles, but you could clearly see the work rate and desire! He (the pod) also missed a kick restart or two? Also very happy to see harry wilson back in the fold. What impressed me from him wasn’t all the usual stuff he is known for, but all the other bits that usually let him down. He looked surprisingly good in the air at lineout time, physical at the breakdown, and good in the maul peeling off 3 georgians for one of the maul tries. Id have frost, skelton, wright as my 4-6 with LSL and wilson on the bench. i’m once again unconvinced by tom wirght - he was very good game 1, but game 2-3 he was back to more rocks than diamonds. There is no real other player to usurp him really so he stays in the team for now but I think Joe should put kellaway wherever he serves the team best and wright can be moved around him. Did donno do enough to overtake noah? My gut says no. They clearly had a plan to attack more so he looked better in that regard because he just had more opportunity, but they looked better off tate (who had a v good game also) then they did off donno.

14 Go to comments
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FEATURE How 'gazelle' Nick Frost thawed the hearts of Wallaby fans at Suncorp How 'gazelle' Nick Frost thawed the hearts of Wallaby fans at Suncorp
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