The French Rugby Union squad are on familiar terrain preparing for their semi-final clash with Wales. It is their fifth consecutive time in the last four of the World Cup. Their country is now united behind them. The same side which conquered England will start with they hope to add anger to their team.
“The match we played against England in which we played so well, is not enough to free ourselves from the frustrations we have felt. And thinking about the future, maybe we’ll need some kind of anger against ourselves, to be sure that we have the commitment and the focus that a semi final deserves,” said Marc Lievremont France Coach
Wales have been forced into one change James Hook replaces the injured Rhys Priestland at number 10. The youthful Welsh have been the revelation of the tournament winning the plaudits for their style and zest. Nine times, though in the last eleven meetings they have succumbed to Les Blues.
“It’s a complete throw of a coin I think. Certainly France have beaten us the last time they’ve played us, the last two times they’ve played us. And we look back at the Six Nations last year, France beat us quite well. We didn’t play too well out in Paris. But I think that now, as a neutral fan or any fan really, it’s a toss of a coin,” said Wales player Jamie Roberts.
In the other semi final on Sunday All Black talisman Dan Carter will have to watch the clash against Southern Hemisphere rivals, Australia from his hospital bed.
New Zealand have made three changes while Australia will field the same side which beat holders South Africa in the quarter finals.