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"A choice of performance", Galthié justifies the return of Ntamack to the opening against the All Blacks


The coach of the XV of France returned this Thursday to a press conference on the composition of his team for the reception of the New

For this shock against the All Blacks, the staff of the Blues considers aligning the best team and recognizes having densified its pack to face the physical challenge of New Zealanders.

Fabien Galthié also explained his strong choice to relegate Matthieu Jalibert to the bench, in favor of Romain Ntamack, who regains his position as opener.

Why did you choose to replace Romain Ntamack at the position of number 10 to the detriment of Matthieu Jalibert?

We have a performance objective, we are looking for players with significant collective experience.

This is why we had associated Romain and Matthieu for 10 training sessions and two test-matches.

This is also why we associate Gaël (Fickou) and Jonathan (Danty) at the center, they played three years together at the Stade Français, they have a lot of experience together.

Like Romain (Ntamack) and Antoine (Dupont) at Stade Toulouse.

Choosing to pair them on Saturday is a performance choice, not a default choice.

Why align this powerful Cros-Jelonch-Alldritt third line?

It is linked to the opposing team and to the profiles of these players.

They are players of character, with experience, both individual and collective.

They played a lot together, and great matches.

It is the third line, the most experienced and the most successful collectively.

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Can you explain

Jonathan Danty's 



Jonathan joined us at the Autumn Cup last year against England.

He was very, very efficient during this competition.

He then played the first two test matches of the tour in Australia, and like in England, he was excellent, he was 200% present.

He is a physically dominant player, altruistic, and no longer bothered by his knee problems.

And Uini Atonio on the front line?

It has a role to play with its specificity.

It gives off a lot of security, strength, ease in the static phases, the mauls too.

He is a huge rugby player, with qualities of hand, replacement, experience.

Cameron Woki

is renewed in the second row.

Has the experience against Georgia been successful?

We first select the players of the moment.

Cameron, today, is the player who suits best, for his power, his activity, his movement.

He has performed so far.

"This match is not an end"

We have the impression that with these choices and the six forwards on the bench, you want to physically strengthen your team ...

We want to send very strong finishers, especially the pack of forwards, to be able to dominate the opponent from the start to the end of the match.

It is a question of balance.

We want to densify, yes, but we want to be able to move, hold the ball, defend, be good on the man, keep control, with and without the ball.

Is this a pivotal match for your team, two years after the start of your mandate and two years before the World Cup?

All of our matches, since the first against England, are momentous matches.

All matches are pivotal matches.

This is our twentieth test, there is not one that is not essential.

Our evolution will continue afterwards, this match is not an end.

It is the meeting place for players, it belongs to them, it is their rugby.

They will do whatever they want during and after the haka, and especially during the match.

Are you going to take inspiration from the Irish who won last week against the All Blacks?

We must pay tribute to the Irish, who made a great match.

But we are France, we have our own history to live out.

This is our rendezvous.

And the Blacks team that will come will not be the same as in Dublin.

How did you experience this week on a personal level?

I often say that for two years we have been living the sublime, the France team is the sublime, the best French players constantly gathered, with the best in the staff, matches in the biggest stadiums and against the biggest opponents.

We are passionate about this game, it's just a game, and the game is childhood.

This child is still there in us.

All the weeks of preparation are a great joy, a great moment, and this week all the more.

Source: leparis

All sports articles on 2021-11-18

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