Six Nations: Jonathan Danty returns from injury as France make three changes for Le Crunch

 Credit: Alamy
Credit: Alamy

France have been boosted by the return of key centre Jonathan Danty, who starts against England at Twickenham on Saturday.

The midfield powerhouse missed the opening three matches of the Six Nations due to a knee issue but is back to partner Gael Fickou at centre.

Francois Cros starts

Following Anthony Jelonch’s ACL injury, Francois Cros comes into the XV after impressing off the bench against Scotland.

He combines with Gregory Alldritt and Charles Ollivon in the back-row, while Paul Willemse and Thibaud Flament are in the engine room.

There is one further change up front as Dorian Aldegheri replaces the banned Mohamed Haouas, with Julien Marchand and Cyril Baille retaining their places at hooker and loosehead respectively.

Elsewhere, France’s team is unchanged with Thomas Ramos, Damian Penaud and Ethan Dumortier once again the back three and Romain Ntamack and Antoine Dupont at half-back.

There is further positive news for Les Bleus on the bench as Peato Mauvaka and Maxime Lucu return.

However, they received a late blow when Matthieu Jalibert suffered a serious-looking injury in training on Wednesday, which means Melvyn Jaminet comes into the 23.

Fabien Galthie has gone for a 5-3 split for the England clash as Reda Wardi, Sipili Falatea, Romain Taofifenua, Seckou Macalou and Yoram Moefana complete the squad for the Six Nations encounter.

The team

France: 15 Thomas Ramos, 14 Damian Penaud, 13 Gael Fickou, 12 Jonathan Danty, 11 Ethan Dumortier, 10 Romain Ntamack, 9 Antoine Dupont (c), 8 Gregory Alldritt, 7 Charles Ollivon, 6 Francois Cros, 5 Paul Willemse, 4 Thibaud Flament, 3 Dorian Aldegheri, 2 Julien Marchand, 1 Cyril Baille
Replacements: 16 Peato Mauvaka, 17 Reda Wardi, 18 Sipili Falatea, 19 Romain Taofifénua, 20 Seckou Macalou, 21 Maxime Lucu, 22 Yoram Moefana, 23 Melvyn Jaminet

Date: Saturday, March 11
Venue: Twickenham
Kick-off: 16:45 GMT
Referee: Ben O’Keeffe (New Zealand)
Assistant Referees: Jaco Peyper (South Africa), Andrea Piardi (Italy)
TMO: Brett Cronan (Australia)

READ MORE: Five storylines to follow on the penultimate Six Nations weekend including Le Crunch and Ireland’s toughest test

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