Malakai Fekitoa smashes Conrad Smith


Rupeni Caucau try and nice assist


Japanese swallow dive try blooper


Massive try saving hit by Israel No.8


Henry Tuilagi swats Zee Ngwenya away


Visser penalised for preventing lineout


Random great tries from 2008


Sebastien Chabal knocks out Marc Giraud


Matt Toomua Falcon vs the All Blacks

Sunday, February 07, 2010

Bastareaud brace helps France to win over Scotland

Bastareaud brace helps France to win over Scotland

France beat Scotland 18-9 at Murrayfield earlier today, with young powerhouse Mathieu Bastareaud scoring two tries as the French silenced the passionate Murrayfield crowd.

In truth a large portion of the crowd were travelling French, who contributed towards a match that was pretty entertaining throughout, starting with a massive hit after just five seconds.

Aurilien Rougerie made the hit and came off second best, but stayed on only to put in another big tackle shortly afterwards, which saw him leave the field after just four minutes.

Scotland looked good early on, showing enterprise as they attempted to stretch the ball across the park. France's rush defence generally kept them in tact though, and it was the visitors who scored through Bastareaud, who went over for his first Test try.

The powerful twenty one year old scored again later in the half, flying down the left wing as the Scottish defenders stood off him as he went over for his second try.

Johnnie Beattie and Sean Lamont were both outstanding for the Scots, as they looked for work and carried the ball went into contact, with Lamont breaking the line on a few occasions. Unfortunately the gaps he found were quickly closed and the chances never really threatened the line.

Imanol Harinordoquy, who put in a Man of the Match performance for the French, said that it was a tough match that required hard work from beginning to end.

"We are of course very happy to win, it was a very tough match out there. We had to play till the last minute because Scotland play with all their heart. In the scrum we had to have a big performance and I believe we won in that area," he said.

Scotland will be proud of their defensive effort, but they need to turn chances into points if they want to challenge Wales next weekend. France dominated the last quarter of the match and never really looked troubled at any stage. They'll play Ireland next weekend in Paris, while Scotland travel to Wales.


Time: 06:29
Join us on the forum for further discussions about this, and other games played this weekend.

Posted at 7:21 pm | 44 comments

Viewing 44 comments

BigTaff February 07, 2010 7:27 pm

While Wales host the Scottish RD

Good game all round, the loss of 2 first choice props didnt help the usually reliable Scottish scrum.

The French are a real worry this year they could beat anyone on the day but so unpredictable in what team will turn up, I'm glad we play them at the millenium stadium this year.


Bastereaud's seemed to have moved on from the NZ scandal good to see.

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Nedorlans February 07, 2010 7:31 pm

Very Good Game! I Can't wait to see the Highlights

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3/4 centre February 07, 2010 7:38 pm

Great game played by the two teams during the first half. Scottish men were ambitious and played an open game but the french were very effective so they punished their mistakes immediately.
The second half was boring, with less intensity. French should not fall asleep like that against Ireland next week or it will be difficult...

Happy for Bastareaud who gave an answer to some critics about his return in France squad. Certainly a future great centre for France.

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Flooz February 07, 2010 8:28 pm

I'm not as euphoric as RD. The match was entertaining. But both teams did a lot of fouls in the second part. Scotland hadn't the weapons than France could have scored 3 more tries if they were clinical.

Bastareaud was incredible, a real bullet through the defence. Imanol is also back in the mauls :)
Other good point: French scrum was very impressive even without Barcella, chabal or Millo-Chluski
Bad point: Parra and Trinh duc must play fast!!

Even if ireland, england and france prove they are favorites for the final win, they all seem to search the good rythm.

France vs ireland will be a big turn

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Kieron February 07, 2010 9:10 pm

I don't mind that Scotland lost today, because I felt they played fairly well. Out of the six teams that played this weekend, I felt that Scotland played the best - chosing to mainly run the ball rather than this kicking crap. Good luck for next week Scotland, looks like Robinson is already making a difference after only being in charge for a few months.

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Maximus February 07, 2010 10:16 pm

^agreed

I think Scotland played the most enjoyable rugby this weekend.
Of course, I'm happy the French won but i'm also a bit disappointed because we should've used our backs more. Trinh Duc and Parra really need to improve, they still look as if they played for themselves and not really for the team. The few times our backs had the the ball it seemed they could make the difference, it's a pity.
I'm not very fond of Bastaraud and I was pretty doubtful about his association with Jauzion but I have to say "what a match"! It's funny how nobody really wanted to tackle him just before his 40-metre try. Quite a decent pace for 114kg.
The French forwards were awesome. THEY won the match.

I'm worried though because we stopped playing in second half and because we looked as if we could kill the match any time but we never managed to do it. If we still can't do that against Ireland, England or Wales I think we'll lose the match.

And I found the refs were all a little rusty this WE.

PS (just in case Parra reads this post): what did you try to do when you went head to head with Lamont because he'd pushed you in the back? Make a fool of yourself? Ahhh ok. It worked then.

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Oli February 07, 2010 10:27 pm

I for one think TD had a very good game, he launched the attacks very well in the first half and had one or two moments of pure brilliance like his pass on the first bastareaud try.

In the second half, he just did what the coaches told him to, kicked more and try to play in the Scottish half.

One aspect of his game that very few people bother to comment is his defense, which is absolutely superb. He won us two penalties and didn't miss a single tackle.

Parra was decent with the boot but lacked a bit of confidence and played a very classical game.

All in all, I know many french are worried with our 9 and 10, but I'm very confident that it will prove those people wrong next week against Ireland.

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Kieron February 07, 2010 11:30 pm

Yeah that was pretty funny, the little scrum half wouldn't have stood a chance against Lamont. He just ended up looking like a fool.

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Frenchy February 08, 2010 12:29 am

I feel frustrated by the 2nd half, against Ireland the French need to be more clinical, especially the back line. Seriously Fall didn't know where he was on the pitch! Lamont smoked him twice. Medard should be back in the team as full back, with Heymans on the wing.
Not impressed by Scotland, they played all the way but except several breaks they didn't show much - so far.

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Anonymous February 08, 2010 12:59 am

Please someone put up the Morgan Freeman speech that was played at the start of the tournament, it was epic! Loving the Hollywood treatment!

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No.7 February 08, 2010 1:31 am

hmmm, well i feel bastareaud made a very good impact today, but personally i wasnt aware of this 'fear' of tackling him that people talk about. The try he scored first was an 'ok' try, nothing from the french, it was a clinical and well finished try, and not that im saying it isnt worth the points, but it was a clear cut catch and dive try, so technically anybody could have scored that (meaning bastareauds size nor presence was needed for it..)

as for the second try, i didnt see any 'fear' shown, simple bad play by the scots and good use of the ball by the french, the scot winger was sucked in and then it was left to kelly brown? the back row to tackle a distant bastareaud...which wasnt going to happen...

then the rest of the game concerning bastareaud was just good running by the lad, he ran hard and it took a player just that few extra yards to take him down....

so, im sorry if you disagree with me, but i dont feel that there was any particular fear installed....



on another note i find it a little funny, this business with euan murray, whilst the mans religious beliefs in my eyes will never be mocked, i think i would find it hard to be a team mate and look him in the eye....scotlands scrum today, lets face it, was ruined by the french....and really, i feel if euan murray had been there, it would have been a slightly different story....so for him to (in my eyes) let his team down and then waltz in when it suits him, is a little sickening....

at the end of the day if the chap feels he cant 'work' on the day of rest, then forfeit your earnings to charity for that match!

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Anonymous February 08, 2010 11:26 am

very useful article. I would love to follow you on twitter. By the way, did any one know that some chinese hacker had hacked twitter yesterday again.

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Anonymous February 08, 2010 11:39 am

.......why dont you just follow RD articles on RD?

lol at the hacker!

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Ben February 08, 2010 12:25 pm

Can't wait for watching the highlights
But i found this funny footage of the match where commentators couldn't pronunciate correctly the name of "harinordoquy"

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KzQrqvzDX8c

Quite funny but u can't blame them, as basque names are full of syllabes ;)

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Mon Ami February 08, 2010 12:32 pm

Bastareaud scored two tries and took both very well but he was a big weakness in defence, If scotland were capable of scoring a try it could've been interesting, Basteraud can't really afford to do the same when he's directly opposite O'Driscoll or he'll get punished badly. Still reckon a french win cos of the big injury concerns ireland have

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Anonymous February 08, 2010 12:36 pm

^^^^ Man you're crazy you didn't watch the game or what?? He saved us on several occasions and he did put a couple of big tackles!! You're blind...

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Anonymous February 08, 2010 12:54 pm

I agree with mon ami! Did you not see him a few times rushin out of the line in defence and leaving a big gapping hole for anyone to run into? Scotland could still be playing and not have scored lol

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numro 8 February 08, 2010 3:12 pm

It wasn't real mistakes... rather incomprehension with Jauzion or the winger. Bastareaud is normally a good defender. Happy to see him scoring a try with his speed : he's not just a powerful centre, and he is working on his technique.
It's obvious that France should play better next week (defense AND attack) to beat Ireland.

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Huh!! the 3rd February 08, 2010 3:57 pm

Never been Lamont's biggest fan, a bit too cocky for the career his had (6 tries in 40 odd caps and he claimed Scotland would win Slam, nothing wrong with claiming that, but you need previous to back it up), but he was everywhere here. Easily Scotland's best option.

I agree with the comments about Scotland at least trying to run the ball, while it may look good, it has to be measured. If you get into a game like that against the French they can cut you apart.

France are the best team in 6N on paper, but I think their TOP14 league is going to affect their fitness levels and they could lose big like against Eng and NZ last year.

So far not a great start to championship

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minstrel boy February 08, 2010 4:18 pm

I was positively surprised by Scotland, although they were outclassed they played some expansive rugby. I think their no.8 had a very good game. Its obvious they lack a quality fly half who would put them in right areas as they tactical kicking was very poor.

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numro 8 February 08, 2010 4:30 pm

^ totally agree

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dezzy February 08, 2010 4:35 pm

bastareaud is pretty strong! the second try is amazing

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Sea-Bass February 08, 2010 5:57 pm

For the ones who are interested, here is Morgan Freeman's opening poem to the Six Nations.
http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport2/hi/rugby_union/8500298.stm

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Anonymous February 08, 2010 6:06 pm

haha Bastereaud looks so funny with his mustache i can't take him seriously

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Anonymous February 08, 2010 6:33 pm

interesting article. I would love to follow you on twitter. By the way, did you guys hear that some chinese hacker had busted twitter yesterday again.

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Nico February 08, 2010 7:46 pm

@ No.7:
Agreed with you re- the "fear factor" for Bastareaud. The second try was simply well worked out and the last defender went for the dummy. Not sure whether it would have made any difference if he hadn't but just one of those unfortunate choices you have to make as the last man.
Good game as a whole and special mention to the Murrayfield crowd. Great as usual.

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T February 08, 2010 9:08 pm

God Jonathan Davies is annoying.

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Phil February 08, 2010 9:34 pm

I know RD threads can get off topic, but solid state memory? What are you on, anonymous?

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geordie February 08, 2010 10:42 pm

to be honest the french butched two almost certain trys it could have been much more

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Anonymous February 08, 2010 10:48 pm

Basteraud looks so strong when he's running hard!!!
Having said that, I didn't see much that Ireland should be afraid of in Frances performance. Hard running and some great lines but that's what we dealt with last year in Croke Park. Paris will be a factor this year.
(Before anyone mentions it, yes I know Irelands performance on the weekend wouldn't exactly strike fear into the French either!)

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Tui February 08, 2010 10:50 pm

Bastareaud showed some great pace in his 2nd try... Good to see get past all that BS he put himself through in NZ..

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pikey February 08, 2010 11:47 pm

i still hate Bastardfaceerau for accuses NZlanders or racially abusing him. waste man

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Anonymous February 09, 2010 12:24 am

Haha, "Harinordoquy" really isn't that hard to pronounce. In fact, once you've heard it a few times, it rolls of the tongue quite easily.

I mean, for crying out loud, these guys usually pronounce Islander names no problem, and for me, that's tough.

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Anonymous February 09, 2010 12:25 am

We don't care, pikey... If he continue to play well for France.

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Anonymous February 09, 2010 12:40 am

^^^ rougerie. badaboom!

LOL mate he had to go off!!! The Scots were made of sterner stuff than him!!!! :D

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Anonymous February 09, 2010 12:42 am

plus if i was a kiwi i wouldnt forgive bastareaud too quickly either, i reckon he'll get a nice reception next year at the WC

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No.7 February 09, 2010 2:47 am

i feel a tad sorry for bastareaud, he messed up himself and looked for a way out, no way would they have found who 'assaulted him' its just a shame it turned into some racial international stuff......ofcourse he shouldnt have lied but i suppose he was scared and young and thought that was the easier and best option.....

anyway enough of that...

those commenting on bastareauds defence have got it slightly wrong, he was blitzing, basically the winger should have been doing the same....the outside centre and winger, rush up so if the 10 passes it they are already in the face of the attackers, and therefore if the 10 doesnt pass it, he has no real options....

this worked well against scotland because, (as the commentators said) they didnt pick up on it....i think a good runner like BOD and whoever is in the centre on the weekend will ruin france if they do it more than once! a neat tactic though was having the wing hold back, it means they couldnt kick it through otherwise the winger would have gathered it....so you have to run around bastareaud and the other frenchies, which lets face it, isnt easy for many, let alone scotland :(


p.s the random comments are spambots i assume

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Alain February 09, 2010 6:48 am

RD please put up a super 14 review video ..gna be a great season.good luck all

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Anonymous February 09, 2010 12:00 pm

Yo From France :

It's "Aurlien Rougerie" not Aurilien !

I love your site, good luck for the 6 Nations

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Anonymous February 09, 2010 5:54 pm

Ah, Northern Hemispheres finest brand of Rugby on display again

if you think this game was good by any stretch of the mile, I suggest you all move to Australia, New Zealand or Sth Africa.

Bastarauds tries were weak. Too many kicks at goal, 3 breaks in total. Complete and utter sham, Super 14 is better then this.

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Maximus February 09, 2010 8:17 pm

^ to anon.
Nobody said they were really pleased with the quality of the matches this weekend.

As for the Super 14 being better than the 6N it's difficult to judge because of the difference that exists in the teams' preparations. I mean, for example the French team started the Tournament while the players had been gathered for no more than 15 days. And you've got to know that at least in France (I don't know for the other countries) there are a couple of Championship matches going on at the same time. It means while France is playing, sometimes, the internationals' clubs are playing as well. And when the 6N stops for a week, the same internationals play for their clubs, very often against the same players with whom they shared the blue shirt the week before. Not the best conditions to produce awesome rugby. In spite of that, the games are sometimes of a fairly decent level.
And I don't mention the weather.
So, the level of S14 may be superior (I don't know, I only watch the highlights on RD) but I think it's the least you can expect from more or less national selections with such a preparation and conditions.

By the way, i give in and you are all totally right. I make amends for saying in the first posts that nobody really wanted to tackle Bastaraud. It was my first impression but you made me watch it again, you're right.

PS: Please don't start a SH better than NH thing. It attracts brainless posters from both Hs.

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Sam February 10, 2010 1:49 am

'Ah, Northern Hemispheres finest brand of Rugby on display again

if you think this game was good by any stretch of the mile, I suggest you all move to Australia, New Zealand or Sth Africa.

Bastarauds tries were weak. Too many kicks at goal, 3 breaks in total. Complete and utter sham, Super 14 is better then this.'

ahhh, a breath of shit, again.....what season is it in the NH again? ah yes winter....you sunburnt chimps ever played on mud? or you still trying to nurse the blade of grass growing under the posts?

nobody said this weekends rugby was great, they simply said this game showed better rugby than the others....

you didnt watch this game, its simple, there were more than 3 breaks, so you are basically trying to stir trouble.....

and once again, when is rugby all about scoring tries? seriously i hope people like you turn to league.

there are 15 men on the pitch, if you want 15 strong runners the come scrum time, you'll get eaten alive.....if you want 15 guys rucking the ball...there is a chance you'll come out on top....and as someone who plays the game in muddy grim wet conditions i can appreciate this....but as you have probably only touched another mans balls, rather than a rugby ball, you probably have no idea....get it bub?

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vinniechan February 12, 2010 4:21 pm

If Scotland is looking to compete in next world cup, their best hope would be to persist with Paterson at 10.

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vinniechan February 12, 2010 4:21 pm

and watching this game, I felt like one team was going through their attacking drills against another going through their defence drills.

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