France to field makeshift squad against Welsh armada
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French coach Marc Lièvremont has unveiled a surprising line-up for his team's clash against Wales. The Clermont centre Benoit Baby (pictured) will start as flyhalf, while 20-year-old Mathieu Bastareaud will make his international debut at centre.
REUTERS - France coach Marc Lievremont has made seven changes to the side that beat Scotland on Feb. 14 for the Six Nations match against champions Wales on Friday.
Benoit Baby will switch from centre to flyhalf to replace the injured Lionel Beauxis and form the ninth halfback pairing in 13 matches since Lievremont's appointment with scrumhalf Morgan Parra. Parra, 20, replaces Sebastien Tillous-Borde and will assume goalkicking duties at the Stade de France.
Maxime Medard takes over from Clement Poitrenaud at fullback while Julien Malzieu is promoted to the right wing and 20-year-old Mathieu Bastareaud wins his first cap at centre.
In the pack, Sebastien Chabal is back at lock, while prop Sylvain Marconnet is recalled at tighthead two years after winning his 71st cap.
15-Maxime Medard, 14-Julien Malzieu, 13-Mathieu Bastareaud, 12-Yannick Jauzion, 11-Cedric Heymans, 10-Benoit Baby, 9-Morgan Parra; 8-Imanol Harinordoquy, 7-Fulgence Ouedraogo, 6-Thierry Dusautoir, 5-Sebastien Chabal, 4-Lionel Nallet (captain), 3-Sylvain Marconnet, 2-Dimitri Szarzewski, 1-Fabien Barcella.
Replacements: 16-Benjamin Kayzer, 17-Thomas Domingo, 18-Romain Millo-Chluski, 19-Louis Picamoles, 20-Sebastien Tillous-Borde, 21-Franois Trinh-Duc, 22-Clement Poitrenaud. (Reporting by Mathieu Baratas, writing by Jean-Paul Couret, editing by Nick Mulvenney)
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