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Six Nations
Friday 23 February 2018, 3:00pm EST

France v Italy

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Key Events

  • FT
  • Yellow CardLuca Bigi
  • ConversionCarlo Canna
  • TRY!Matteo Minozzi
  • ConversionFrancois Trinh-Duc
  • TRY!Mathieu Bastareaud
  • Penalty GoalMaxime Machenaud
  • Penalty GoalMaxime Machenaud
  • ConversionMaxime Machenaud
  • TRY!Hugo Bonneval
  • Penalty GoalTommaso Allan
  • Penalty GoalMaxime Machenaud
  • HT
  • Penalty GoalMaxime Machenaud
  • Penalty GoalMaxime Machenaud
  • TRY!Paul Gabrillagues
  • KO


Match Stats
Player Stats
Defenders beaten
Clean breaks
Turnovers conceded
Turnovers won
Missed tackles
France T C P
15 Hugo Bonneval 1 0 0
14 Benjamin Fall 0 0 0
13 Mathieu Bastareaud 1 0 0
12 Geoffrey Doumayrou 0 0 0
11 Remy Grosso 0 0 0
10 Lionel Beauxis 0 0 0
9 Maxime Machenaud 0 1 5
1 Jefferson Poirot 0 0 0
2 Guilhem Guirado 0 0 0
3 Rabah Slimani 0 0 0
4 Paul Gabrillagues 1 0 0
5 Sebastien Vahaamahina 0 0 0
6 Wenceslas Lauret 0 0 0
7 Yacouba Camara 0 0 0
8 Marco Tauleigne 0 0 0
16 Adrien Pelissie 0 0 0
17 Dany Priso 0 0 0
18 Cedate Gomes Sa 0 0 0
19 Romain Taofifenua 0 0 0
20 Kelian Galletier 0 0 0
21 Baptiste Couilloud 0 0 0
22 Francois Trinh-Duc 0 1 0
23 Gael Fickou 0 0 0
Italy T C P
15 Matteo Minozzi 1 0 0
14 Tommaso Benvenuti 0 0 0
13 Tommaso Boni 0 0 0
12 Tommaso Castello 0 0 0
11 Mattia Bellini 0 0 0
10 Tommaso Allan 0 0 1
9 Marcello Violi 0 0 0
1 Andrea Lovotti 0 0 0
2 Leonardo Ghiraldini 0 0 0
3 Simone Ferrari 0 0 0
4 Alessandro Zanni 0 0 0
5 Dean Budd 0 0 0
6 Sebastian Negri 0 0 0
7 Maxime Mbanda 0 0 0
8 Sergio Parisse 0 0 0
16 Luca Bigi 0 0 0
17 Nicola Quaglio 0 0 0
18 Tizano Pasquali 0 0 0
19 George Biagi 0 0 0
20 Federico Ruzza 0 0 0
21 Edoardo Gori 0 0 0
22 Carlo Canna 0 1 0
23 Jayden Hayward 0 0 0


Six Nations

4 France 69 11
6 Italy 38 1
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  • The result was perhaps never in doubt; for one night, France put aside worries of a crisis to emerge comfortable winenrs against an Italian side who have now lost a recoerd 15 NatWest 6 Nations games on the bounce. Mathieu Bastareaud, on his return to the national side, led from the front with a score of his own and some fabulous play to match - and with his efforts, Les Bleus are off the mark in the Championship. Until next time then, thank you for joining us - and have a great weekend!
  • Yellow Card
    Another penalty - and a yellow card! - as Bigi deliberately knocks on, with the replacement sent to the sin bin. France will go for the fourth try once more - and knock on in the first tackle with the line begging. Referee Barnes blows the whistle for full-time; France are denied the bonus point but get the victory as they win their first 2018 NatWest 6 Nations game 34-17 against Italy in Marseille!
  • Into overtime now and Italy's short kick-off sees them camped on the French line looking for the try, with Bastareaud earning a penalty after 11 phases for messing around at the ruck.
  • Conversion
    CONVERSION: France 34-17 Italy. Carlo Canna taps over the extras without the tee and the visitors make the scoreline that bit more respectable.
  • TRY: France 34-15 Italy. A consolation score - and a cracking one at that - for Minozzi as Italy cut back on themselves to the left and find the gap via Castello who blasts away downfield to put the full-back in, despite the efforts of Bonneval to intercept.
  • A double scrum collapse gives Italy the penalty on their own line which allows them to march the French downfield and away to midfield.
  • Bonneval very nearly gives his side that vital extra point as he scythes off down the right in a fluid motion, supported by Fall; the winger can't quite take in the last pass, botched as the full-back is hauled to ground and tackled.
  • Conversion
    CONVERSION: France 34-10 Italy. François Trinh-Duc now adds the extras, as he arrives on the field for France - and the hosts are now hunting a fourth try and a potentially vital bonus point.
  • Try
    TRY: France 32-10 Italy. Mathieu Bastareaud is over to cap off a brilliant return to the national side, bulldozing his way over from close quarters on the left, on the back of an excellent Marco Tauleigne break through midfield. Italy look dead on their feet, crumbling at the line.
  • Penalty Goal
    PENALTY: France 27-10 Italy. Machenaud adds the extras, with his last kick of the game as Baptiste Couilloud replaces him for his France debut.
  • Penalty advantage to France which they recieve after Italy's defenders fail to peel away from Beauxis; Machenaud will go for goal once more.
  • A litany of other changes too; Ferrari and Ghiraldini are off for Italy, replaced by Tiziano Pasquali and Luca Bigi, whilst Romain Taofifenua, Kelian Galletier and Gael Fickou are all on for France as the hosts get a penalty for a collapse at the scrum by Italy.
  • Beauxis reads a chip-and-chase down the left wing by Italy to perfection, exploiting the smallest of gaps on the blindside to get there before Jayden Hayward, on for Boni.
  • Penalty Goal
    PENALTY: France 24-10 Italy. Machenaud adds three more points from 40m out and makes it a gap of two converted scores.
  • France are almost off again, this time on the right wing as Fall opens up an overlap and speeds downfield. He's held in his tracks but then Quaglio is penalised for being offside and France will go for goal again.
  • Dany Priso is on for Jefferson Poirot, as from the restart, Parisse goes down in a ruck that sees Italy penalised for failing to release.
  • Conversion
    CONVERSION: France 21-10 Italy. Machenaud adds the extras from the touchline to give his side an 11-point lead - and that could very well be a bridge too far for Italy to come back from.
  • Try
    TRY: France 19-10 Italy. The hosts get the first try of the second half as full-back Hugo Bonneval pulls off a break down the left from halfway and trades passes with winger Grosso to slip around the remaining Italian defenders for a well-worked, flashy score.
  • Nicola Quaglio is on for Lovotti in the front-row for Italy as Benvenuti drills France's return into the right corner with a kick of his own.
  • Negri makes a barnstorming run down the right flank from a line-out that Italy win following Grosso sticking the ball out with a wayward kick and the visitors look to be heading for the try-line - until Lauret is able to keep them from releasing out on the left, 10m shy, on the sixth phase.
  • From the base of the scrum, Beauxis puts a crossfield kick out wide to the right for the speedy Fall. It's a great, inventive play - but not as great as Bellini's one-on-one tackle and steal to stop the winger from tearing away downfield.
  • Two collapsed scrums on halfway give Italy the ball from the restart - and then Andrea Lovotti knocks on coming away two phases later.
  • Penalty Goal
    PENALTY: France 14-10 Italy. Allan slashes the gap with his effort from distance in centre-field and Italy keep pace with their hosts in this NatWest 6 Nations encounter.
  • Violi is off, repalced by Edoardo Gori, and three phases later, Italy get a penalty after Parisse is taken out off the ball. The visitors will go for goal through Allan.
  • The Azzurri are unable to convert the possession on the line, with Camara intercepting the throw and allowing Beauxis to hack the ball downfield for a line-out 30m away again.
  • France make a terrible misjudgement from the restart though and put the ball out cheaply; Italy are gifted a line-out on the left wing 20m away followed by a penalty that Violi slots close to the near corner flag after the hosts collapsed the maul.
  • Penalty Goal
    PENALTY: France 14-7 Italy. It's a simple kick for the half-back and Machenaud converts it to give increase his side's lead to a converted score.
  • Machenaud busts a drop goal attempt wide from 30m out and misses, with the penalty advantage allowing him to tee up another shot.
  • A let-off for the hosts now; Allan's clearing kick is poor and from the resulting line-out only 25m away on the left, France pick up a penalty advantage.
  • France fluff another chance again - and it's a big one. Beauxis is put into space out wide on the left and slips through the gap. He has a three-on-two overlap going down the wing - and his pass is bobbled behind by Doumayrou to give Italy the scrum.
  • We're back underway at the Stade Velodrome as Bellini claims the high restart from Beauxis out deep on the left wing. France force the winger down the short side and earn a line-out - and then lose it softly to Sebastian Negri.
  • Blighted by off-field problems they may be, but led by a sterling showing from Mathieu Bastareaud, France have exploited Italian errors to dominate the game for the most part in Marseille - but they remain unable to turn their possession into serious points, blowing several golden chances to dot down for a try. They have the lead - but a slim one that they won't be comfortable with. At half-time, it's France 11-7 Italy.
  • Violi pops up the restart high; Fall collects and taps the ball out on his wing for the half-time whistle.
  • Penalty Goal
    PENALTY: France 11-7 Italy. From the touchline, the half-back adds the extras and the hosts stretch their lead on the stroke of half-time.
  • A superb steal from Bastareaud defuses the Italian attack and Fall slips a grubber down the wing that France exploit, with Italy conceding a penalty for holding down. Machenaud will go for goal.
  • Camara looks to sweep round the left wing, released by fast hands from the attacking line; Parisse manages to haul him in and dump him into touch for a line-out on his side's 40m mark.
  • Simone Ferrari claims the line-out, only to spill the ball two plays later and both sides begin an exchange of lengthy kicks, jockeying for field possession.
  • Budd is off in the first change of the game, replaced by George Biagi as Italy find touch just inside the French half on the right.
  • A grubber in for Bastareaud on the back of a quick-tap penalty by Doumayrou five metres out sees Castello just get hands to the ball for a 22m drop-out. Fall intentionally fouls the Italian to stop another quick restart - and the visitors get the penalty.
  • Two collapsed scrums later and France eventually get the ball out, to Doumayrou and then Grosso who breaks. Bellini intercepts - and then throws the ball straight back to Bastareaud as the game bursts into a frantic passage.
  • A terrible restart from Allan who puts his restart kick out on the full with a schoolboy error; France get the scrum on halfway.
  • Penalty Goal
    PENALTY: France 8-7 Italy. The hosts take the smallest of leads as the game approaches the half-hour mark, Machenaud slotting it over from 20m out in front.
  • Hugo Bonneval's kick for touch is good and then France earn a penalty advantage, which they get after Yacouba Camara loses the ball. It's bang in front of goal - and Machenaud opts for goal.
  • Violi opts to go down the short side on that right flank from the line-out - and is made to pay, unable to release as two French defenders close him down. Penalty to the hosts.
  • Great work from Machenaud after France win the line-out, with the half-back spreading it wide crossfield to the left for Remy Grosso; the winger outpaces two and is only brought down when Matteo Minozzi gets to him, with the ball spilling away and out for an Italian line-out.
  • Italy work it well, heading down the right through several kick plays via Alessandro Zanni and Benvenuti - and then a Violi grubber nearly undoes France whose return kick is poor and goes out into touch.
  • France take the ball through centre-field again, locked on halfway, and then Geoffrey Doumayrou's quick feet catch him out as he loses the ball trying to slip around Dean Budd. Scrum to the visitors.
  • France work their way back downfield afrter winning the line-out and Sebastien Vahaamahine is only inches away five phases later - before the hosts cough up to Boni who tears downfield and clears for Italy.
  • What a break from France! Beauxis is through a gap on the right and only a desperate cover tackle from Tommaso Castello denies him. Italy mass their men back to hold up the attackers - and then Lauret concedes a penalty to the visitors for coming off his feet, on the line near the right post as he tries to go over.
  • Penalty advantage to France as Jefferson Poirot tries to find a way through the Italian line out wide on the left 30m out.
  • A scrum from the restart for France after Italy cough up following a neat Machenaud kick and then the hosts earn the penalty too.
  • Try
    PENALTY TRY: France 5-7 Italy. Penalty try to Italy! The TMO deems that an unspecified France player collapsed the maul to prevent the grounding - and upon consultation, Barnes gives the visitors the full seven points. Mbanda gets the score and the Azzurri have the lead.
  • Is this a try for the visitors? Italy get a maul from the line-out and sheer force from 10m out sees them force the ball over the line. Mbanda claims a grounding and referee Barnes awards the try - before the TMO intercedes and asks for a look, unsure that the flanker got the ball down.
  • Now a penalty to Italy as from their line-out, France cough up possession and Machenaud then fouls Violi with an obstruction.
  • Inventive play from the hooker Leonardo Ghiraldini and captain Sergio Parisse sees the former get the ball back from the line-out pass and he attempts to sneak down the left wing, only to bobble it out under pressure and knock on.
  • From the restart and Italy pile the pressure on France to haul Benjamin Fall out for a line-out. 
  • Try
    TRY: France 5-0 Italy. The gamble pays off! From the line-out, France force the maul over the line and Paul Gabrillagues manages to get the ball over in the huddle in the corner. Machenaud slices his kick wide so the try remains unconverted.
  • Another penalty to France now for Italy fouling the ruck; Lionel Beauxis puts it into touch again, five metres away on the right, rather than going for goal.
  • Mathieu Bastareaud earns a penalty for the hosts as he goes over in the tackle, managing to keep Tommaso Boni from releasing. Maxime Machenaud puts it out 20m away on the right flank and France win the line-out to start applying pressure.
  • We're underway in Marseille for this NatWest 6 Nations clash! Tommaso Allan kicks off for Italy and France return after two plays before Marcello Violi puts a short chip up out wide to the right on halfway that the visitors reclaim through Tommaso Benvenuti.
  • The anthems are over and we're moments away from kick-off. England's Wayne Barnes is the referee for the night.
  • The teams are out in Marseille for the national anthems on what is a chilly, dry French night.
  • Sergio Parisse wins his 132nd cap today, drawing him level with Keven Mealamu as the fifth most-capped international of all time. This is also his 63rd Championship appearance, matching Ronan O’Gara as the second most-capped player in the competition’s history; only Brian O’Driscoll has made more, with 65.
  • The visitors are in new territory of a sort today; it is the first time they have played a Championship match on a Friday and the fifth time in all competitions since the turn of the century. France have featured in four of the previous seven, winning and losing two apiece against Wales – who have coincidentally played in the remaining three as well, marking this match as the first time a Friday night clash has been contested by non-British sides.
  • Brunel’s side have only ever lost two of their 18 Championship encounters with the Azzurri, both times in Rome, in 2011 and 2013. As such, they are undefeated at home against Conor O’Shea’s men in nine games, running out with an 18-point winning margin on average, though they only just snuck a 23-21 win in 2016, thanks to the boot of Jules Plisson. With French rugby deemed to be in “crisis” by former flanker Olivier Magne thought, do Italy have a chance to sneak an impressive scalp in Marseille and avoid a 15th straight defeat in the process?
  • The hosts are looking to overturn a winless run of eight games, in what has been their worst streak since 1968-69 when they went 11 without victory. Having lost both of their opening two games, they have replicated their 2013 campaign; the only other time since Italy joined the Championship that they have claim the wooden spoon.
  • Replacements: Luca Bigi, Nicola Quaglio, Tiziano Pasquali, George Biagi, Federico Ruzza, Edoardo Gori, Carlo Canni, Jayden Hayward
  • Italy XV: Matteo Minozzi, Tommaso Benvenuti, Tommaso Boni, Tommaso Castello, Mattia Bellini, Tommaso Allan, Marcello Violi; Andrea Levotti, Leonardo Ghiraldini, Simone Ferrari, Alessandro Zanni, Dean Budd, Sebastian Negri, Maxime Mbanda, Sergio Parisse (c)
  • Replacements: Adrien Pelissie, Dany Priso, Cedate Gomes Sa, Romain Taofifenua, Kelian Galletier, Baptiste Couilloud, Francois Trinh-Du, Gael Fickou
  • France XV: Hugo Bonneval, Benjamin Fall, Mathieu Bastareaud, Geoffrey Doumayrou, Remy Grosso, Lionel Beauxis, Maxime Machenaud; Jefferson Poirot, Guilhem Guirado (c), Rabah Slimani, Paul Gabrillagues, Sebastien Vahaamahina, Wenceslas Lauret, Yacouba Camara, Marco Tauleigne
  • Team news now and a much-changed France line up in contrast to the one who faced off at Murrayfield. Mathieu Bastareaud returns after serving a three-week ban for a homophobic slur; Geoffrey Doumayrou is the only man retained in the three-quarter line. As for Italy, they make three changes to their squad, with Maxime Mbanda making his first start of the Championship and George Biagi recalled to the bench after featuring against England but missing out in Dublin.
  • The headlines leading up to this week three clash have been dominated by French coach Jacques Brunel’s decision to drop eight players in total for “inappropriate behaviour” after a night out in Edinburgh following their loss to Scotland, in which police questioned squad members following an accusation of sexual assault. Championship leading try-scorer Teddy Thomas is among those absent for the hosts; the FFR has refused to name which individuals have been specifically disciplined.
  • Neither of these two teams have picked up a victory yet this year, but it has not been for a lack of trying. Though Italy were ultimately on the receiving end of blowout scores in both of their games, they pushed England close for over an hour at the Stadio Olimpico, whilst France suffered two heart-breaking defeats to Ireland and Scotland. Both will be desperate to get off the mark in the Championship – lying in fifth and sixth respectively with 2 and 0 points, whilst Ireland and England sit jointly atop the pile on 9 each.
  • Hello and welcome, from around the world, as the 2018 NatWest 6 Nations reaches its halfway point with France hosting Italy at the Stade Velodrome in Marseille. Both sides are searching for their first win of the Championship after consecutive losses over the opening weekends – but who will triumph in the tussle for the Giuseppe Garibaldi Trophy on the Cote d'Azur today?

Live Match Centre – France v Italy