France are unchanged as Scots look to give Hogg starting spot

 

There was no faulting the logic of Philippe Saint-André yesterday as he named an unchanged XV for France's Six Nations encounter with Scotland at Murrayfield on Sunday. "Nobody played a bad game," the head coach of Les Bleus said. Quite. But then nobody played at all when the former Sale and Gloucester director of rugby sent his players out on to the frozen wasteland of the Stade de France 11 days ago.

"We decided to keep the same team, even though we must coach them differently," Saint-André said of the XV who never got to face the Irish in Paris and who will be seeking to pick up the momentum of France's 30-12 win against Italy on the opening day of the championship. Scotland might have started the Six Nations with two defeats – at home to England and away to Wales – and be on a run of four losses in all competition but Saint-André is expecting a stern examination from Andy Robinson's men. "It will be a big test for us," he said.

"Scotland are a team who know how to string together phases. We know that they will run the ball a lot. Strategy-wise, and physically it will be very demanding. Substitutions will be very important.

"During the Stade Français versus Toulon game last weekend, the ball was effectively in play for 26 minutes. It was in play for 46 minutes during Scotland v Wales."

Having failed to capitalise on a string of changes in their 13-6 defeat England, Scotland paid the price for a disastrous third quarter against Wales, losing 27-13. Robinson names his team today and is likely to give a starting berth to Stuart Hogg, the 19-year-old Glasgow full-back who injected attacking dynamism off the bench in Cardiff.

"We created a lot of chances against Wales but we weren't clinical enough," Ross Ford, Scotland's hooker and captain, said yesterday."We will keep the faith in how we're trying to play and that we will take the opportunities and finish them off.

"We have talked about it in the last couple of weeks. It's just about being composed. We have created chances, it's all about having belief and being clinical.

"We've been recreating that in training and repeating them until it becomes second nature. It's something we have got to be better at. The French are very clinical. We have got to make sure that when they have the ball we are very aggressive."

BUY RUGBY WORLD CUP TICKETS

Suggested Topics
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Giants Club: After wholesale butchery of Idi Amin's regime, Uganda’s giants flourish once again

Uganda's giants are flourishing once again

After the wholesale butchery of Idi Amin's regime, elephant populations are finally recovering
The London: After 350 years, the riddle of Britain's exploding fleet is finally solved

After 350 years, the riddle of Britain's exploding fleet is finally solved

Archaeologists will recover a crucial item from the wreck of the London which could help shed more light on what happened in the vessel's final seconds
Airbus has patented a jet that could fly from London to New York in one hour

Airbus has patented a jet that could fly from London to New York in one hour

The invention involves turbojets and ramjets - a type of jet engine - and a rocket motor
Tate Sensorium: New exhibition at Tate Britain invites art lovers to taste, smell and hear art

Tate Sensorium

New exhibition at Tate Britain invites art lovers to taste, smell and hear art
10 best sun creams for kids

10 best sun creams for kids

Protect delicate and sensitive skin with products specially formulated for little ones
Ashes 2015: Nice guy Steven Finn is making up for lost time – and quickly

Nice guy Finn is making up for lost time – and quickly

He was man-of-the-match in the third Test following his recall to the England side
Ashes 2015: Remember Ashton Agar? The No 11 that nearly toppled England

Remember Ashton Agar?

The No 11 that nearly toppled England
Turkey-Kurdish conflict: Obama's deal with Ankara is a betrayal of Syrian Kurds and may not even weaken Isis

US betrayal of old ally brings limited reward

Since the accord, the Turks have only waged war on Kurds while no US bomber has used Incirlik airbase, says Patrick Cockburn
VIPs gather for opening of second Suez Canal - but doubts linger over security

'A gift from Egypt to the rest of the world'

VIPs gather for opening of second Suez Canal - but is it really needed?
Jeremy Corbyn dresses abysmally. That's a great thing because it's genuine

Jeremy Corbyn dresses abysmally. That's a great thing because it's genuine

Fashion editor, Alexander Fury, applauds a man who clearly has more important things on his mind
The male menopause and intimations of mortality

Aches, pains and an inkling of mortality

So the male menopause is real, they say, but what would the Victorians, 'old' at 30, think of that, asks DJ Taylor
Man Booker Prize 2015: Anna Smaill - How can I possibly be on the list with these writers I have idolised?

'How can I possibly be on the list with these writers I have idolised?'

Man Booker Prize nominee Anna Smaill on the rise of Kiwi lit
Bettany Hughes interview: The historian on how Socrates would have solved Greece's problems

Bettany Hughes interview

The historian on how Socrates would have solved Greece's problems
Art of the state: Pyongyang propaganda posters to be exhibited in China

Art of the state

Pyongyang propaganda posters to be exhibited in China
Mildreds and Vanilla Black have given vegetarian food a makeover in new cookbooks

Vegetarian food gets a makeover

Long-time vegetarian Holly Williams tries to recreate some of the inventive recipes in Mildreds and Vanilla Black's new cookbooks