French cannons must roar against Namibians


After France’s struggling performance against Uruguay in Lille, it can be safely said that Fabian Galthié is a little “over” – as the young people say – the plodder of the Roosters’ second best players.

That’s why the French’s rough shot is back for Thursday’s World Cup match against Namibia.

Galthié chose his rugby cannons to roar against the Welwitschias in Marseille.

Yes, Gregory Alldritt will miss the showdown due to a knee injury, but Galthié can still count on the services of Antoine Dupont, Thomas Ramos, Damian Penaud and Matthieu Jalibert to tame the Namibians at a trot.

In addition, Jonathan Danty and Cyril Baille have recovered sufficiently from their injuries and are in the Roosters starting line-up for the game.

However, Galthié gave the assurance that players like Gabin Villiere and Jean-Baptiste Gros do not suddenly find themselves on the proverbial rugby ash heap.

“We simply rotate the players so that other guys also get a chance to play against Namibia. We need everyone in the team,” said the French coach.

Then Allister Coetzee made nine changes to the side that bogged down against the All Blacks last week.

Danco Burger will now be captain Johan Deysel’s centre-mate after Le Roux Malan broke his ankle in the game against the New Zealanders.

The 24-year-old Malan has since confirmed that the injury could have been much worse, but he could still be sidelined for up to six months.

Namibia have never been able to win a game in their seven World Cup attempts. The closest they came to a victory was in 2015 when they lost by one point to Georgia.

The match starts at 21:00 on Thursday.

Namibia: André van der Berg (full back), Gerswin Mouton (right wing), Johan Deysel (captain and outside centre), Danco Burger (inside centre), JC Greyling (left wing), Cliven Loubser (fly-half), Jacques Theron (scrum-half), Prince Gaoseb (eighth man ), Johan Retief (flank), Max Katijeko (flank), Adriaan Ludick (lock), Mahepisa Tjeriko (lock), Aranos Coetzee (prop), Louis van der Westhuizen (hooker) and Desiderius Sethie (prop). Substitutes: Obert Nortjé, Jason Benade, Haitembu Shikufa, PJ vanLill, Richard Hardwick, Oela Blaauw, Alcino Izaacs and Divan Rossouw.

France: Thomas Ramos (full back), Damian Penaud (right wing), Gaël Fickou (outside centre), Jonathan Danty (inside centre), Louis Bielle-Biarrey (left wing), Matthieu Jalibert (fly-half), Antoine Dupont (captain and scrum-half), Anthony Jelonch (eighth man ), Charles Ollivon (flank), Francois Cros (flank), Thibaud Flament (lock), Cameron Woki (lock), Uini Atonio (prop), Peato Mauvaka (hook) and Cyril Baille (prop). Substitutes: Pierre Bourgarit, Reda Wardi, Dorian Aldegheri, Romain Taofifenua, Paul Boudehent, Baptiste Couilloud, Yoram Moefana and Melvyn Jaminet.

  • Group A standings:
  1. France: 8 points
  2. New Zealand: 5 points
  3. Italy: 5 points
  4. Uruguay: no points
  5. Namibia: no points