Australia and France take different approaches for the 2nd test – .

Australia and France take different approaches for the 2nd test – .

MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) – After an error-ridden first playoff game that tipped wildly on a finicky last-minute pass, Australia and France took different approaches to the selections for the second rugby test.

Australian coach Dave Rennie made a change to the starting lineup after the Wallabies sealed a 23-21 comeback victory at Brisbane with a penalty goal in the stoppage time. France coach Fabien Galthie made five changes to his XV in a bid to level the series on Tuesday in Melbourne.

Mainstay Wilfrid Hounkpatin, lock Pierre-Henri Azagoh and backrower Ibrahim Diallo were chosen to make their test debuts in a reworked French front pack.

Hounkpatin replaced Demba Bamba, relegated to the bench, while Azagoh and Cyril Cazeaux were chosen to start in the second row instead of Killian Geraci and Romain Taofifenua.

Diallo has replaced Sekou Macalou and will join captain and number 8 Anthony Jelonch at the back with Cameron Woki, who was selected in place of flanker Dylan Cretin.

The French side lacked some top players for the trip to Australia and had to spend two weeks in quarantine before playing three tryouts in 11 days against the Wallabies.

“The choice of composition was first dictated by performance,” Galthie said of her selections. “We tried to put together a strong team capable of competing with the Australians while sparing a group of 41 players.

“Let’s not forget that our starting vision for this tour was to discover talent.

France led from the sixth minute of the first test until the last seconds, winger Gabin Villière scoring two early tries to give a 15-0 lead.

Towards the end, France only had to knock to touch after a defensive formation to secure a two-point victory and their first test victory in Australia since 1990.

But a mistaken pass and the ensuing scramble caused Australian substitute scrum-half Tate McDermott to pounce on the ball to set up a dramatic finish.

The Australian forwards threw phase after phase down the French line and opening half Noah Lolesio had a scrapped goal attempt. A series of penalty advantages eventually saw Lolesio score an easy penalty goal straight ahead to seal an Australian victory.

Prop Taniela Tupou was promoted to Australia’s starting lineup in the one change for the hosts.

Tupou replaced Allan Alaalatoa, who fell on the bench, with Rennie choosing the same matchday 23 for the first time in consecutive tests since taking office last year.

“Taniela had a real impact on both sides of the ball when he came on… and we’ll be looking for him to do the same from the start in Melbourne,” said Rennie. “We have worked hard and are well conditioned. A lack of precision in Brisbane prevented us from making the most of it, but we showed a lot of character to stay in the fight until the final whistle.


Queues :

Australia: Tom Banks, Tom Wright, Hunter Paisami, Matt Toomua, Marika Koroibete, Noah Lolesio, Jake Gordon; Harry Wilson, Michael Hooper (captain), Rob Valetini, Lukhan Salakaia-Loto, Matt Phillip, Taniela Tupou, Brandon Paenga-Amosa, James Slipper. Reserves: Lachlan Lonergan, Angus Bell, Allan Alaalatoa, Darcy Swain, Isi Naisarani, Tate McDermott, Len Ikitau, Andrew Kellaway.

France: Melvyn Jaminet, Damian Penaud, Arthur Vincent, Jonathan Danty, Gabin Villière, Louis Carbonel, Baptiste Couilloud; Anthony Jelonch (captain), Cameron Woki, Ibrahim Diallo, Cyril Cazeaux, Pierre-Henri Azagoh, Wilfrid Hounkpatin, Gaetan Barlot, Jean-Baptiste Gros. Reserves: Anthony Etrillard, Enzo Forletta, Demba Bamba, Killian Geraci, Romain Taofifenua, Sekou Macalou, Teddy Iribaren, Anthony Bouthier.


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