France coach Fabien Galthie named an unchanged side on Thursday to host Wales at the Stade de France in their Six Nations match this weekend.
South African-born Bernard le Roux, the regular lock in the France side, was not considered after failing to recover sufficiently from the thigh injury that caused him to miss the England game.
Second row forward Romain Taofifenua therefore kept his place after the loss to England.
Wales can claim a second tournament clean sweep in three years with a win in Paris, reports AFP. Galthie’s men need a bonus-point victory and to beat Scotland in a re-scheduled fixture next Friday to clinch the title for the first time since 2010.
“We’re very satisfied with the performance of the team in general,” Galthie said. “We’re very satisfied with the potential of this team too.
“In Twickenham, we felt a lot of potential and strength in this team and what we need to do a week later is to bounce back against Wales with the potential that is at the heart of this team,” he added according to AFP.
Galthie stuck with Jalibert, Taofifenua and Cretin in favour of Romain Ntamack and Anthony Jelonch, and Swann Rebbadj who are on the substitutes’ bench.
▲ There are three new faces among the reserves as Galthie reverted to five forwards and three backs.
Prop Uini Atonio comes in for Dorian Aldegheri, Rebbadj replaces the injured Cyril Cazeaux and flanker Cameron Woki drops out for centre Arthur Vincent.
The former Les Bleus scrumhalf said his side’s goal is to win the fixture before looking for the four tries or more for the additional points in the table.
“It doesn’t change much in our preparation. The focus is on this match, to perform well against this opposition and to win the game,” he said.
“Then there will be elements to consider.”
France team –
15 Brice Dulin, 14 Damian Penaud, 13 Virimi Vakatawa, 12 Gael Fickou, 11 Teddy Thomas, 10 Matthieu Jalibert, 9 Antoine Dupont, 8 Gregory Alldritt, 7 Charles Ollivon (captain), 6 Dylan Cretin, 5 Paul Willemse, 4 Romain Taofifenua, 3 Mohamed Haouas, 2 Julian Marchand, 1 Cyril Baille.
Replacements: 16 Camille Chat, 17 Jean-Baptiste Gros, 18 Uini Atonio, 19 Swann Rebbadj, 20 Anthony Jelonch, 21 Baptiste Serin, 22 Romain Ntamack, 23 Arthur Vincent.
Date: Saturday, March 20