After Breton’s trip against South Africa (46-3), last Saturday in Van, the three colors can write a new page in their history at Béarn, today, with their victory over New ZealandWorld Champion and the second team in the world rankings.
They are also entitled to a rematch next Saturday in Castres. These two tough tests mark the beginning of the path that will lead them to the World Cup in New Zealand in October 2022. “This tour is part of a journey in the goals we have set for ourselves. There will then be training periods, the Six Nations Championship before the full transition to the World Cup,” explains Annick. Hayrod, director of the 15th Women’s Tournament of France.
The coronavirus pandemic has greatly frustrated the roadmap of his players, who have not faced the Blacks since July 2019. By that time already far away, the Blues won 25-16. A second straight victory against their opponents in the Pacific since they had already won 30-27 in Grenoble in November 2018.
Experience and confidence
The New Zealanders, who have finally returned to Europe, began their autumn tour with two matches in England, taking first place in the world rankings. Two matches ended in major disappointments (43-12 and 56-15) against the Red Roses. Evidence that “Black Fougere” has not caught up after more than two years without high-level international matches. The opponent is weak, but no less dangerous, says Annick Herod: “They still have good players with a lot of experience. It is a very strong team that will come to face us.”
The manager is happy to face a world reference twice in order to right his team’s few mistakes. “We are able to reach a certain level of competition. The idea is to stay at that level and take steps. Playing these countries allows us to grow this business a little bit more and check that mastery that can sometimes get away with us,” confirms Annick Hayraud, who It has reincorporated into its fifteenth debut several CEOs such as third line Romain Menager, Pauline Bourdon in scrum, or Gaëlle Vernier in the middle.
“It is important to rely on a team that is a bit more experienced against this type of opponent. We have a very competitive squad of 36 players, and the goal is to improve the skills of each player. Les Bleues will surely also be keen to avenge the Sevens cousins who were defeated by New Zealand in the final This summer at the Tokyo Games.
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