Monday, March 16, 2009

International Result: England 34, France 10

England 34, France 10 at Twickenham (6 Nations)

England tore up the form book and washed France away and out of Twickenham. The French could only watch and see their 6 Nations dream swept away by a rampaging England, who led France 29-0 at halftime.

England finally found some form and gave plenty for their fans to cheer about. France, utterly lifeless compared to their display against Wales 2 weeks ago, could do little to stem the first half surge by England.

In the second half some rusty bits appeared back in England's play from old but they did enough to hold France out and take the game convincingly.

This is the clash of the 6 Nations competition for this weekend. England still has a mathematical chance of winning the championship but it would need to whallop the French by many and then dismember Scotland next weekend. France needs to win and win well today, then hope Wales knocks Ireland off next weekend and then walk over Italy on the same day. Occasionally the 6 Nations Championship does serve up some interesting finishes.

England will need to play exceedingly well to defeat France today. They pushed Grand Slam contenders Ireland very close in Dublin two weeks ago and although we have seen little sparkle and flow we have seen England developing into a brute of a team.

France has been hinting that better things will be since the competition began. It's been rebuilding and it all finally came together against Wales two weeks ago. The French are reknown for their inconsistency and any lapses today will be snaffled up by an English side determined to silence it critics. And don't forget the English win in Paris last year nor when England knocked France out of the World Cup the year before! This should be a mommoth clash but don't expect any brilliant play.

Last Five Encounters
23.02.2008 England 24-13 in Paris (6 Nations)
13.10.2007 England 14-9 in Paris (World Cup, Semi-final)
18.08.2007 France 22-9 in Marseilles (World Cup Warm up)
11.08.2007 France 21-15 at Twickenham (World Cup Warm up)
11.03.2007 England 26-18 at Twickenham (6 Nations)

GWC Rugby Rankings: World Table-France 3rd, England 7th
Europe Table-France 1st, England 4th

Prediction: I do like an upset. England to win by 3 points in a low-scoring brusing affair. Also 4 yellow cards to be shared!!


15 Delon Armitage
14 Ugo Monye
13 Michael Tindal
12 Riki Flutey
11 Mark Cueto
10 Tobais Flood
9 Harold Ellis
8 Nicholas Easter
7 Joseph Worsley
6 Thomas Croft
5 Simon Shaw
4 Steven Borthwick, Capt.
3 Phillip Vickery
2 Lee Mears
1 Andrew Sheridan
16 Dylan Hartley
17 Julian White
18 James Haskell
19 Nicholas Kennedy
20 Daniel Care
21 Andrew Goode
22 Mathew Tait
Head Coach: Martin Johnson


15 Maxime Medard
14 Julien Malzieu
13 Mathieu Bastareaud
12 Yannick Jauzion
11 Cedric Heymans
10 Françios Trinh-Duc
9 Morgan Parra
8 Imanol Harinordoquy
7 Sebastien Chabal
6 Thierry Dusautoir
5 Jérôme Thion
4 Lionel Nallet, Capt.
3 Sylvain Marconnet
2 Dimitri Szarzewski
1 Lionel Faure
16 Benjamin Kayzer
17 Thomas Domingo
18 Louis Picamoles
19 Julien Bonnaire
20 Sebastien Tillous-Borde
21 Florian Fritz
22 Damien Traille
Head Coach: Marc Lièvremont

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