France player ratings: A weird and wonderful end to the most dramatic and beguiling of Guinness Six Nations.
A rain-sodden France were rattled early but played themselves back in the match before, well, before Brice Dulin…
FRANCE PLAYER RATINGS:
15. BRICE DULIN – 4
Has had a great tournament but he had some wobbly moments and errors with ball in hand here, albeit on a rainy Parisian night. Fabien Galthie accused the Welsh of card-seeking behaviour, but Dulin played a major role in shortening Finn Russell’s evening. His failure to kick the ball out in the 81st minute was unforgivable and utterly French.
14. DAMIAN PENAUD – 8
In the wars. Unselfishly put his back three mate Dulin in for France’s first try when he could well have finished it himself after stepping Duhan Van Der Merwe. Did brilliantly for his solo effort after the break.
13. VIRIMI VAKATAWA – 5
Full of violence when contributing in defence. His sublime offload for Penaud’s try was first class, but a lot of passing and decision-making was thoroughly pedestrian at other points during the match. Drifted in and out of the game.
12. ARTHUR VINCENT – 6
One of France’s most consistent metre makers, with 93 metres from 8 carries, even if distribution was very much secondary concern tonight.
11. GAEL FICKOU – 8
A great aerial performance from the left-wing, even if Six Nations fans are more used to seeing him doing his thing in the centres. Not to blame here.
10. ROMAIN NTAMACK – 7
A rusty performance for the Toulousain who missed the start of the tournament. A nervy and wet France needed a steady hand at the tiller and Ntamack struggled to play his way into the game in the first half. Came into it more as the track dried but the baller approach was never going to work tonight.
9. ANTOINE DUPONT – 7
Spent most of the first half putting out fires and fannying about with loose balls care of his profligate forward pack. His influence grew as the game wore on. An irrepressible little rascal but this was comme ci, comme ça by his standards.
1. CYRIL BAILLE – 7
In a dead heat with Wyn Jones as to the Six Nations form loosehead. Off after 56 minutes.
2. JULIEN MARCHAND – 8.5
Some proper flashy moments in attack, proving a real pain to deal with for the Scots.
3. MOHAMED HAOUAS – 8
The volatile Montpellier prop is a big physical presence and – even if he isn’t the fittest tighthead in the tournament – is a prodigious tackler. Sadly no round two with Jamie Ritchie for the neutrals to enjoy.
4. BERNARD LE ROUX – 6
France have missed the combative South African’s collision winning and his relentless defensive energy. Went off early.
5. SWAN REBBADJ – 7.5
It’s early in his Test career but the athletically built Toulon forward got through a lot of the unglamorous stuff. Was imperious at the lineout and took his try well.
6. ANTHONY JELONCH – 6
There’s a touch of Olivier Magne about the Castre flanker, even if most of his impact lies in defense.
7. CHARLES OLLIVON (C) – 6
He has that consistency of performance that you need in a skipper but French ultimately paid for a nervous start to this one.
8. GREGORY ALLDRITT – 6
Didn’t quite hit the highs of his remarkable 2020 tournament but still a rare talent. Another Frenchman who preferred the drier track in the second-half, amassing the guts of 100 carry metres.
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