Paul Willemse package with the Blues for the reception of Wales

The second row of the XV of France Paul Willemse, hit in the thigh, withdrew for the last match of the Six Nations Tournament on Saturday against Wales at the Stade de France, the French Rugby Federation announced on Monday. He started in the first four meetings of the French team in the Tournament, including that against England on Saturday, concluded with a historic success at Twickenham (53-10). The Montpellier player (30 years old, 28 caps) “is out and back in his club today”, said the FFR in a press release without further details.

He suffers from a hamstring injury, his club told AFP, without indicating the duration of his unavailability. Willemse had already been deprived of the Blues’ last autumn tests due to a hamstring injury in his right leg.

Taofifenua to assist him

The powerful second line of South African origin was replaced in the 49th minute by Romain Taofifenua, without apparent injury. He has not yet been replaced in the group trained to prepare for the reception of the Welsh this weekend. Taofifenua logically applies for a place in the starting fifteen, even if the tricolor staff prefers to use him in a role of “finisher”.

In the absence of the injured Cameron Woki, Bastien Chalureau, Willemse’s Montpellier team-mate, is another second-row option with Rochelais Thomas Lavault, who was on the bench in the first match of the Tournament in Italy, but was not did not come into play.

Currently second in the standings with three wins in four matches, France still have a chance to win the Tournament for the second consecutive year. It will have to beat Wales (3:45 p.m.) and then hope for a setback from Ireland, the number 1 nation in the world on the way to the Grand Slam, which hosts England (6:00 p.m.) in Dublin.


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