Les Bleus ont terrassé les All Blacks et réussi leur entrée dans la Coupe du monde, ce vendredi 8 septembre (victoire 27-13). Récit d’une soirée de folie.
Il suffisait de suivre Jean Dujardin, parti décrocher la Lune Webb-Ellis dans le ciel de Saint-Denis. Dans le sillage du “Loulou” (ou chouchou ?) préféré des Français, les Bleus ont réussi leur décollage dans le voyage le plus important de leur vie, celui d’aller chercher le bout du monde. Le long nuage blanc à l’horizon, menaçant, a été passé avec brio grâce à cette confiance inéluctable qui habite la compagnie Air XV de France depuis quatre ans. Ça y est, les Bleus sont lancés.
The weather during this start-up was peculiar, though. Almost as strange as seeing Grégory Alldritt without his helmet.
To compare, it was somewhat like a first romantic date. After tons of messages sent, heating up the anticipation, the meeting doesn’t turn out exactly as expected. The initial contact is even icy.
This is what the French felt on Friday night when Mark Telea’s flash of brilliance brought a breath of fresh air to the scorching heat in Paris. The fans, still a bit disoriented from the €12 pints around the stadium and the sweltering conditions in Saint-Denis (31 degrees at kick-off), had to quickly refocus. Thankfully, the French team reassured everyone, their eternal composure quickly prevailing thanks to Thomas Ramos’ kicking skills.
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However, the French team’s confidence was still put to the test. As expected, the « all blacks » were not going to be cute little lambs, as they seemed to be against the South African butchers fifteen days ago. The world’s best player, Rieko Ioane, instilled terror with every ball, Richie Mo’ounga and Beauden Barrett perfectly alternated between kicking and hand play. Despite some moments of panic, Dupont’s team always kept their nerves low enough to prevent any mishaps.
Fin de match de folie
Even the choppy pace of the game did not affect it. The premature exit of Julien Marchand due to injury or the strange performance of Jaco Peyper did not either. The referee of the match played a role in this game, being the first actor in this bizarre tempo between prolonged scrums and the neglect of the video tool, which is otherwise so useful in this sport.
None of this has any impact on these Blues, who are impervious to everything that falls on their heads. And as often since the beginning of the Galthié era, opponents have thought they could compete and they end up conceding almost thirty points. Their excellence in the final moments of the game is currently their deadly weapon, along with Damian Penaud, who was once again elusive on Friday night. Thibaud Giroud’s job, questioned due to the injuries of Ntamack and others, is wreaking havoc.
Before the match, we promised not to downplay this defeat. Like good Latin people, we wouldn’t (too much) put a victory against the prestigious All Blacks into perspective. No. This Saturday morning, we can proudly wake up knowing that we have defeated the greatest rugby nation.