Six Nations - France call upon Harinordoquy

Tue, 07 Feb 11:35:00 2012

France have brought Imanol Harinordoquy into their team for Saturday's Six Nations home clash against Ireland in four changes to the starting lineup from last weekend's opening victory against Italy.

Imanol Harinordoquy France 2011 - 0

Manager Philippe Saint-Andre on Tuesday named an unchanged backline after France's four tries in their 30-12 win against the Azzurri in Paris but rung the changes among the forwards.

Harinordoquy will replace flanker Julien Bonnaire as Saint-Andre is hoping for some major improvement in the lineouts, while the experienced Jean-Baptiste Poux will take over from debutant Vincent Debaty.

Hooker Dimitri Szarzewski will replace William Servat with Yoann Maestri taking over from lock Lionel Nallet.

"I wanted to bring in some freshness since maybe we worked too much last week," Saint-Andre told a news conference.

"It was logical to bring Imanol in for the lineouts."

Saint-Andre said he was tempted to play Harinordoquy with Bonnaire for the lineouts at the expense of number eight Louis Picamoles but decided against it because of the Toulouse player's fine performance against Italy.

"I thought about it but Picamoles's performance, defensively and offensively, was great. He made a lot of tackles and he managed to destroy the Italian rucks," Saint-Andre explained.

The changes, however, were not a punishment to those who were relegated to the bench.

"There is no sanction, we're a united squad," he said, adding that France needed to adjust to the Irish game, which is "different to the Italians".

"We know that Ireland will offer something different. It is going to be a tough fight during 80 minutes," Saint-Andre said.

"They are able to run the ball very wide. We will face different defensive problems but that's what is interesting.

"It is going to be a very high level game."

Saint-Andre was confident his backs would again look threatening having kept faith with centres Wesley Fofana and Aurelien Rougerie, as well as wings Vincent Clerc and Julien Malzieu, who delivered a man-of-the-match performance against Italy.

"Everytime we had the ball and we put on some speed, we created danger," said the former France winger.

France team to face Ireland: 15-Maxime Medard, 14-Vincent Clerc, 13-Aurelien Rougerie, 12-Wesley Fofana, 11-Julien Malzieu, 10-Francois Trinh-Duc, 9-Dimitri Yachvili, 8-Louis Picamoles, 7-Imanol Harinordoquy, 6-Thierry Dusautoir (captain), 5-Yoann Maestri, 4-Pascal Pape, 3-Nicolas Mas, 2-Dimitri Szarzewski, 1-Jean-Baptiste Poux. Replacements: 16-William Servat, 17- Vincent Debaty, 18-Lionel Nallet, 19-Julien Bonnaire, 20-Morgan Parra, 21-Lionel Beauxis, 22-Maxime Mermoz


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