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France will associate Ntamack and Jalibert against the Pumas and will make his debut to the ‘Argentine’ Flament

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The starts Romain Ntamack and Matthieu Jalibert will start, respectively, in the center and opening positions, with the French rugby team, on Saturday against Argentina, in their first game of the November window.

Thibaud Flament, second row of Toulouse, will experience his first selection of the Bleus, captained by the mediacrum Antoine Dupont for the November tests.

If the idea hovered in the head of the technical team of the Bleus, the decision to start with this association in the duel against the Pumas has been precipitated by the injuries of the two potential starters in the center, Virimi Vakatawa (Racing 92) and Arthur Vincent (Montpellier), as well as the good form in which Jalibert, star of Union Bordeaux Bègles is (95 points from eight championship games).

As England or New Zealand are in the habit, France will line up against the Pumas with two starts to make the game fluid and take advantage of the qualities of both with their feet.

Ntamack and Jalibert have already played together for the French national team, nine minutes against Wales (27-23), in the 2020 Six Nations Tournament.

"These two players, for two years, are among the best in the championship. Romain has a habit of playing as a center for Stade Toulousain, he has a lot of experience. We try to put the best players on the field, although it is true that injuries have not left many options", explained the French coach, Fabien Galthié.

– Some Pumas "fearsome" –

For his part, the manager of the Bleus, Raphael Ibáñez, affirmed that Argentina is a team "fearsome", despite not being in his prime, having lost all six of his games at the recent Rugby Championship.

"We owe them the utmost respect. It is a team that has historically been built against difficult tests. It has been affected by the current circumstances at the heart of its rugby, with a franchise (Jaguares) dissolved, an obligation for the Pumas technical team to rebuild permanently. That makes them scarier"Ibáñez explained.

For his part, Galthié has also opted for a new third row, with François Cros, Anthony Jelonch and Cameron Woki, due to the absence of the usual captain Charles Ollivon, injured. Grégory Alldritt, meanwhile, will be on the bench.

Montpellier mainstay Mohamed Haouas and Toulon wing Gabin Villière, absent due to injury at the start of the concentration, return to the starting team, where Perpignan fullback Melvyn Jaminet must confirm their good performances in Australia.

In total, there will be seven players from the Stade Toulousain (Baille, Marchand, Flament, Cros, Jelonch, Dupont, Ntamack), French and European champions last season, who will play from the start against the Pumas.

To them we must add hooker Peato Mauvaka, who will be on the bench. Unión Bordeaux Begles, current leader of the Top 14, the French championship, has two players in the starting XV: Jalibert and Woki.

The ‘Argentine’ Flament makes his debut

Flament, 24, born in Paris, will make his international debut against Argentina, a country he knows, having played a campaign at Newman.

He lived in Asia, before discovering rugby in Belgium and then leaving for the UK, to Loughborough University.

After he went to Argentina, for a ‘stage’ at the French embassy in Buenos Aires, where this opening of training began to think for the first time about a professional career in rugby.

After a season at Newman, the globetrotter returned to England, where he made a name for himself at Wasps in the Premiership.

It was there that he was discovered by the French coach from Bath, Pierre-Henry Broncan, now in Castres, who recommended him to his old friend from Toulouse Ugo Mola. Thus, he returned to France in 2020.

Composition of the XV of France that will play against Argentina: Jaminet – Penaud, Fickou, Ntamack, Villière – Jalibert, Dupont (captain) – Cros, Jelonch, Woki – Willemse, Flament – Haouas, Marchand, Baille.


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