French ’10′ poser
18 Jun 2006
French coach Bernard Laporte may not play Thomas Castaignede at flyhalf against the Springboks on Saturday.
Then again he may.
The French coach was on Sunday unclear about who would play No 10 in the absence of the injured Frederic Michalak. Castaignede was the favourite to play against the Boks at flyhalf after starting there against Romania. However, he was not as good as he could have been and the whispers are that Damian Traille could be handed the 10 jersey against the Boks.
Then again it may be a curve ball to create some sort of confusion among the Bok coaches because they certainly would have to prepare differently for the more physical Traille, usually a centre, than Castaignede. If the latter does not start at flyhalf then he will play fullback at Newlands.
Laporte will pick a team showing several changes to the one that beat the Boks in Paris. Injury has forced out Michalak, but Laporte has opted to rest the starting winger, scrumhalf and loose-trio from the Paris win.
Fatigue is something the French media are talking about and the word from within the French camp is that the players’ mental attitude will determine Saturday’s result. The French know that they are good enough to beat anyone, but in the wrong state of mind they’re also capable of losing to anyone.