By Paul Ackford at the Stade de France 900AM GMT twenty-one March 2010Focus Morgan Parra takes target as France led from the front with the foot Photo GETTY IMAGES
A Grand Slam for France, even if it was not the jubilant way they had hoped for. Their feat was formed precisely on a glorious scrummaging bid from the starting front row and their replacements that brought England to their knees. At times the French props, Thomas Domingo and Nicolas Mas, marked down the England scrum to rubble, but England had the compensation of scoring the games usually try and, at last, there was a opening from them that would bear examination again on video.
Yet usually a wretchedness courage would nitpick at this French side. They were by a little area the most appropriate organisation in the championship, and if this was not their biggest performance, at slightest they hold on underneath poignant vigour to secure their prize. Imanol Harinordoquy and Morgan Parra were the leaders of this group. Their generalship and the beast force of the front five were as well most for England, and it will be engaging to see if France flog on from here to turn a participation at the World Cup. My gamble is they will.France v England player ratings England dismay France - but still miss a slicing corner Paul Ackford highs, lows and lessons Will Greenwood England eventually looked similar to a organisation Six Nations transformation Rugby Union fixtures
England proposed as the organisation they longed for to be rather than the reparation of a rugby side they have been in this Six Nations. There was genuine zip to their opening effort. Mike Tindall strike the round at speed, the defensive line was discerning and eloquent and, excellence be, most of the backs showed they essentially had discerning hands. Some of the passing, from Riki Flutey and Tindall in the set up up to Ben Fodens score, was impressive, and of credit, too, to Englands analysts since the speed of the passes took the blitzing Mathieu Bastareaud out of the action.
France were rocked early on. They didnt similar to the England they hadnt approaching to see, and they didnt suffer the corner to the exchanges when Simon Shaw and Dylan Hartley clattered in to the tackles. But this French organisation crop up some-more imperishable than a little of their some-more flaky predecessors. With Harinordoquy commencement to have an impact, France shrugged off the sleet that fell in torrents via the half, and done pointed adjustments to their defensive strategy. Then they tightened the screw.
The big cause in the initial half was Frances strenuous supremacy at the scrum. Dan Cole was incited inside and out by Domingo. Englands scrum wasnt helped when Shaw was forced off harmed after twenty-one minutes, but there was no denying the imagination and the ferocity with that France sucked the punch out of England.
Three times arbitrate Bryce Lawrence, the same central who took such a be vexed to Phil Vickerys technique in that main initial Lions Test in South Africa in the summer, penalised Cole, and Parra kicked the points. Frances scrum-half, fast flourishing in to a figure of genuine stature, landed 3 shots at goal, to go to one side Francois Trinh-Ducs third-minute forsaken goal, and France finished the half 12-7 in front.
Martin Johnson and Graham Rowntree, Englands scrummaging coach, were so endangered at Englands powder smoke bid in the front row that they transposed Cole and Hartley during the interlude with David Wilson and Steve Thompson. Shrewd move? For the initial 10 mins of the second duration there wasnt even a singular scrum to countenance their decision. Instead, England pulpy by their forwards and were crushed behind by inhuman French defence.
Englands most appropriate possibility in a earnest spell fell to new child Chris Ashton, who attempted to thinly slice over French full-back Clement Poitrenaud but overhit the round and lost the competition to the line.
England had an additional noble event when Mark Cueto bust by French defenders. Poitrenaud hauled him down but the move was still alive and really earnest until Danny Care unsuccessful to cling to on to the round in the plunge in to with space outward him. This was the duration when England regained the fluidity with that they started. There was some-more journey about them, some-more risk, but additionally a clarity that they were chasing the game.
The last entertain brought Mathew Tait, Jonny Wilkinson and James Haskell in to the action. By this time the compare had lost all figure as England attempted to rescue their deteriorate with a last wooer effort. There was no disbelief that France were perturbed. There were fewer scrums for them to browbeat and the bigger French forwards began to tumble off tackles as England found some-more movement. The French lead was additionally eaten in to extremely when Wilkinson crushed over a beast chastisement after 67 mins to move England to inside of 2 points of France at 12-10.
Cue an escalation of tragedy as the competition reached the climax. Foden took a discerning line-out usually to throw it brazen to give France a scrum on Englands twenty-two and that is where the French stayed as they sought to run down the last minutes.
The feat wasnt flattering but when Yannick Jauzion discovered the round from a last England conflict the track erupted with acclaim. European rugby has a side of stature. And England? Third is not great sufficient even if they saved their most appropriate til last.
France Poitrenaud; Andreu, Bastareaud, Jauzion, Palisson; Trinh-Duc, Parra; Domingo, Servat, Mas, Nallet, Pierre, Dusautoir (c), Bonnaire, Harinordoquy.Substitutes Szarzewski, Poux, Chabal, Lapandry, Yachvili, Marty, Malzieu. England Foden; Cueto, Tindall, Flutey, Ashton; Flood, Care; Payne, Hartley, Cole, Shaw, Deacon, Worsley, Moody (c), Easter.Substitutes Thompson, Wilson, Palmer, Haskell, Youngs, Wilkinson, Tait.Referee B Lawrence (New Zealand).