Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

THE INTERVIEW

Exclusive: Israel's US ambassador speaks to FRANCE 24

Read more

#THE 51%

World War One: The war that changed women’s lives

Read more

FRANCE IN FOCUS

Ségolène Royal goes for green

Read more

THE OBSERVERS

A look back at some of the Observers' best stories

Read more

DEBATE

Argentina Defaults: Kirchner Cries Foul Over 'Vulture Funds' (part 2)

Read more

DEBATE

Argentina Defaults: Kirchner Cries Foul Over 'Vulture Funds'

Read more

AFRICA NEWS

Ebola death toll tops 700

Read more

AFRICA NEWS

Dozens of youths trampled to death on Conakry beach

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Renault's women drivers ad deemed sexist

Read more

  • Exclusive: Israel's US ambassador speaks to FRANCE 24

    Read more

  • Live: Israeli soldier feared captured, ceasefire 'over'

    Read more

  • Ugandan court strikes down anti-gay legislation

    Read more

  • Regional summit to tackle deadly Ebola outbreak

    Read more

  • French hospital to open wine bar for terminally ill patients

    Read more

  • €2.5 million in cocaine ‘disappears’ from Paris police HQ

    Read more

  • Appeal court keeps French rogue trader Kerviel in jail

    Read more

  • Air France ground workers to strike on August 2

    Read more

  • Interactive: France’s new plan to counter jihadism in Africa

    Read more

  • Ukrainian army suffers losses in separatist attack

    Read more

  • Dozens killed and injured in Taiwan gas blast

    Read more

  • Argentinian markets plummet following default

    Read more

  • French Jews speak of growing fear in Paris amid Gaza conflict

    Read more

  • Video: Inside Hamas ‘terror’ tunnels in Gaza

    Read more

  • Sierra Leone declares state of emergency over spread of Ebola

    Read more

Sport

All Blacks beat France 8-7 to win Rugby World Cup

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2011-10-23

New Zealand’s All Blacks won 8-7 against France in a tense match to take the 2011 Rugby World Cup. France rallied from 8-0 down and came within one kick of taking the lead with just 15 minutes remaining.

AP - France came within touching distance of one of the biggest upsets in Rugby World Cup history, losing Sunday’s final by a single point to heavily favored New Zealand in a display of courage and relentless determination.

When New Zealand finally held on for an 8-7 win, France No. 8 Imanol Harinordoquy collapsed to the ground, having given every drop of energy he could possibly muster, and lay prone as All Blacks danced around him in celebration.

Few critics had given France any chance, but coach Marc Lievremont’s team rallied from 8-0 down and came within one kick of taking the lead with 15 minutes remaining, only for flyhalf Francois Trinh-Duc’s 49-meter effort to drift wide.

It was Lievremont’s last match in charge -- his coaching career ending like his playing career did, with a loss in the World Cup final.

France was pilloried because of it poor form in the pool stage, where a 37-17 defeat to New Zealand was followed by a humiliating 19-14 loss to Tonga that almost pushed the French out of the competition.

From the depths of despair, France somehow found the pride and passion it had lacked in the pool stage to regroup in the knockout section with a convincing quarterfinal win over England and then a 9-8 semifinal victory over 14-man Wales.

Any pre-match talk of France’s place in the final not being deserved had fully dissipated soon after the kickoff.

Pockets of French fans struggled to make themselves heard during the national anthem, and then watched with pride as Lievremont’s players broke with convention to challenge New Zealand’s haka, linking arms and marching forward.

France started in determined fashion, denying New Zealand space and making some inroads through midfield, although never close enough to truly test the All Blacks defense.

When flyhalf Morgan Parra went off for treatment to a head wound for a second time, Trinh-Duc came on and played with verve and intelligence.

Trinh-Duc tried his luck with a dropped goal from 35 meters out, but his effort drifted wide.

He started to get more and more influential as the match went on, breaking through several tackles on a surging first-half run, and showing great awareness to pick up Piri Weepu’s hashed kick and leading a quick break which eventually led to captain Thierry Dusautoir’s try.

Center Aurelien Rougerie set up Dusautoir near the line and Trinh-Duc converted to make it 8-7.

France was left to rue its kicking, as Dimitri Yachvili missed a penalty from the left, and Trinh-Duc missed his 65th-minute chance from just in front of the halfway line.

Trinh-Duc led attack after attack, helped by Rougerie and Medard as they drove forward constantly.

France’s players formed a huddle as New Zealand celebrations continued, showing the unity that brought them together in recent weeks and so close to a first World Cup title after losing the 1987 final to New Zealand, and the 1999 final to Australia, both by far more comprehensive margins.
 

Date created : 2011-10-23

  • Rugby World Cup

    All Blacks warned to be ready for final with France

    Read more

  • 2011 Rugby World Cup

    All Blacks crush Wallabies to meet France in final

    Read more

  • 2011 Rugby World Cup

    France qualifies for place in Rugby World Cup final

    Read more

COMMENT(S)