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Second-string France overcome valiant Uruguay at Rugby World Cup

Second-string France overcome valiant Uruguay at Rugby World Cup


RUGBY WORLD CUP

Hosts France followed up their opening-night triumph over the All Blacks with an underwhelming defeat of Uruguay in their second World Cup match on Thursday, missing out on bonus points as they struggled past a spirited South American side.

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4 min

France's Melvyn Jaminet misses a penalty kick against Uruguay at the Stade Pierre-Mauroy in Lille on September 14, 2src23.

France’s Melvyn Jaminet misses a penalty kick against Uruguay at the Stade Pierre-Mauroy in Lille on September 14, 2023. © Stéphanie Lecocq, Reuters

Last week’s rip-roaring victory over three-time winners New Zealand was always going to be a hard act to follow for the hosts, but few had expected them to struggle against Uruguay, one of the lowest-ranked teams at the tournament, who put on a defiant spectacle at the Stade Pierre-Mauroy in Lille.

France coach Fabien Galthié had made wholesale changes to the home side, opting to rest the likes of Gregory Alldritt, Gael Fickou, Charles Ollivon and captain Antoine Dupont. But he warned his players not to show complacency, noting that Uruguay had “big hearts” and “a lot of energy and aggression”.

That warning turned out to be an understatement.

Uruguay were making their tournament debut

…. to be continued
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