Laporte makes changes for Ireland clash

2nd March 2005, Comments 0 comments

PARIS, March 2 (AFP) - France coach Bernard Laporte has dropped No 8 Imanol Harinordoquy, a second half replacement in the 24-18 defeat to Wales last Saturday, for the the Six Nations match with Ireland at Lansdowne Road on March 12.

PARIS, March 2 (AFP) - France coach Bernard Laporte has dropped No 8 Imanol Harinordoquy, a second half replacement in the 24-18 defeat to Wales last Saturday, for the the Six Nations match with Ireland at Lansdowne Road on March 12.

Bourgoin lock Pascal Pape, recovered from a sprained ankle, returns to the 22-man squad.

"Imanol wasn't great when he came on against Wales but we are not punishing him. We wanted to reinforce our second row because we might change both locks during the match," Laporte said of the decision to do without the 32-cap Harinordoquy.

The forward fell out of favour after last November's thrashing by the All Blacks and missed the games against Scotland and England but was recalled as a replacement for Wales.

Laporte has also recalled wing Cedric Heymans for Aurelien Rougerie who injured his chest against Wales and gives Ludovic Valbon a recall in the place of Jean-Philippe Grandclaude, who was a second half replacement against both England and Wales.

Valbon, capped in last year's June Tests against the United States and Canada, was a second half replacement in the 16-9 win over Scotland when he pinched a nerve in his back.

Grandclaude plays for France A versus Ireland A.

Ireland are chasing their first Grand Slam since 1948 after beating England on Sunday while France need to win in Dublin to hope to retain their Six Nations title and deny the Irish a chance of a Grand Slam showdown with Wales in Cardiff.

Laporte will name his starting XV next Tuesday.

France Backs: Dimitri Yachvili (Biarritz), Pierre Mignoni (Clermont), Yann Delaigue (Castres), Frederic Michalak (Stade Toulousain), Damien Traille (Biarritz), Yannick Jauzion (Stade Toulousain), Ludovic Valbon (Biarritz), Christophe Dominici (Stade Francais), Cedric Heymans (Stade Toulousain), Julien Laharrague (Brive). Forwards: Sylvain Marconnet (Stade Francais), Nicolas Mas (Perpignan), Olivier Milloud (Bourgoin), Sebastien Bruno (Sale/ENG), William Servat (Stade Toulousain), Fabien Pelous (Stade Toulousain, capt), Jerome Thion (Biarritz), Pascal Pape (Borugoin), Gregory Lamboley (Stade Toulolusain), Serge Betsen (Biarritz), Julien Bonnaire (Bourgoin), Yannick Nyanga (Beziers).

© AFP

Subject: French News

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