France hold on to seal their first victory over New Zealand in 12 years

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France pushed back New Zealand in the second half to claim a 40-25 victory in Paris and end a 14-game losing streak against the All Blacks.

New Zealand, who made seven changes as they sought an immediate response to last weekend’s 29-20 loss to Ireland, were down 24-6 at halftime as the endemic Blues took full control of the Stade de France.

However, three tries in 12 minutes after the break – by Jordie Barrett, Rieko Ioane and Ardie Savea – saw New Zealand come within two points of their hosts at 27-25, as well as become the first team in history. practice matches to score. 100 trials in a single season.

At this point, France’s hopes of a first win over the three-time World Cup winners since 2009 – and the first at home since a 42-33 triumph in Marseille in 2000 – seemed to be fading quickly, but an incident at the 63rd minute saw the pendulum come back in their direction.

Savea was fished to reduce New Zealand to 14 men and France took full advantage with Melvyn Jaminet scoring the resulting penalty before Damian Penaud escaped for an interception try.

At 37-25, there was no way to turn back the clock for New Zealand and France, who had seen Peato Mauvaka score twice on either side of Romain Ntamack’s try in a dominant display in the first half. -time, concluded a memorable victory with the late penalty from Jaminet.

The home side’s stunning performance completed a perfect streak for France after victories over Argentina and Georgia, and gave them their first Paris victory against the All Blacks since 1973, two years before hosting the World Cup.

France coach Fabien Galthie said: “We had this game in mind as a moment of truth. The team kept what we promised.

“This is not how we wanted to end our year,” said New Zealand captain Samuel Whitelock. “No excuse, they were better than us. It hurts to say this, but we have to hold on to that feeling because we don’t want to feel it again. »Agencies

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