WATCH: Damian Penaud wins it for France with a magnificent late try against the Wallabies

France wing Damian Penaud crosses for the winning try against the Wallabies Credit: Alamy
France wing Damian Penaud crosses for the winning try against the Wallabies Credit: Alamy

France was trailing 25-29 to the Wallabies with less than five minutes to go in what had been a scintillating Test filled with moments of collective and individual brilliance but what happened next was the play of the game.

The hosts had the ball on the left side of the field just beyond the Wallabies’ 10-metre line when they decided to go wide quickly on the openside. A forward pod took the pass from Antoine Dupont before popping it out the back to substitute playmaker Matthieu Jalibert, who ripped a ridiculous pass out to winger Damian Penaud on the right-hand touchline.

Penaud had it all to do with two defenders in front of him and several working hard to cover across. However, the wing showed clinical finishing ability as he faked going on the outside and then beat the defender by cutting back on the inside.

The wing presence of mind to carry the ball in his right hand allowing a crucial fend on the cover defender before putting the hammer down to score in the corner and win it for France 30-29.

A truly magnificent try made even better by the context of the game, which had already been filled with magic, including a long-range try from the Wallabies through Lalakai Foketi.

The 90-metre score was orchestrated by an elusive run by wing Tom Wright down the left flank, followed by two well-times passes to set the centre free to score one of the tries of the year.

Nevertheless, Les Bleus proved once again that they are the real deal and a team that can find a way to win, an impressive quality going into their home World Cup next year.

The challenge next week is a completely different one as the Grand Slam champions welcome the world champions Springboks to Paris, who came off a narrow 19-16 defeat to Ireland last time out.

France coach Fabien Galthie will be hoping his side will find themselves in a better position late in the game where there is no need for any individual brilliance to save a result.

READ MORE: Autumn Nations Series Team of the Week: France lead the way, with All Blacks, Ireland and Argentina also rewarded for their victories

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