Philippe Saint-Andre names final France World Cup squad
Francois Trinh-Duc a victim of all-time top scorer Frederic Michalak’s renaissance
Frederic Michalak’s resurgence has seen him earn a place in France’s Rygby World Cup squad with Francois Trinh-Duc missing out. Photograph: Getty
Saint-Andre has dropped four other players from his preliminary squad, axing Sebastien Vahaamahina, Xavier Chiocci, Loann Goujon and Remi Lamerat.
Lamerat of Castres was dropped in favour of Toulouse centre Gael Fickou and, while the front trio of Vahaamahina, Chiocci and Goujon were not expected to make the cut, Trinh-Duc’s absence comes as a surprise.
“[It was a] difficult moment to see the five players leave the group,” Saint-Andre said in a statement.
Trinh-Duc is a casualty of the resurgence of Michalak, who became France’s all-time record points scorer during the 25-20 victory over England in Paris on Saturday.
Another rival for the flyhalf role was Remi Tales, whose importance to the squad as an off-field leader is also a reason why Trinh-Duc has missed out.
France welcome Scotland to the Stade de France on September 5th in another pre-tournament warm-up match, before they begin their World Cup campaign against Italy at Twickenham on Sepember 19th.
Forwards: Uini Atonio, Eddy Ben Arous, Vincent Debaty, Nicolas Mas, Rabah Slimani, Guilhem Guirado, Benjamin Kayser, Dimitri Szarzewski, Alexandre Flanquart, Yohann Maestri, Pascal Pape, Thierry Dusautoir, Bernard Le Roux, Yannick Nyanga, Fulgence Ouedraogo, Damien Chouly, Louis Picamoles.
Backs: Rory Kockott, Morgan Parra, Sebastien Tillous-Borde, Frederic Michalak, Remi Tales, Mathieu Bastareaud, Alexandre Dumoulin, Gael Fickou, Wesley Fofana, Sofiane Guitoune, Yoann Huget, Noa Nakaitaci, Brice Dulin, Scott Spedding.