Sun 20 Mar 2022 | 02:24

Dupont: All about the Grand Slam... for now

Dupont: All about the Grand Slam... for now
Sun 20 Mar 2022 | 02:24
Dupont: All about the Grand Slam... for now
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REACTION: France captain Antoine Dupont insisted he wanted to “make the most” of a long-awaited Grand Slam success and not worry about the World Cup after a 25-13 win at home to England.

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The win saw Les Bleus bagged their first Six Nations title in 12 years.

The victory strengthened France’s status as favourites to win next year’s World Cup on home soil, with scrumhalf Dupont rounding off an impressive all-round display by running in the last of his side’s three tries just after the hour mark at a raucous Stade de France on Saturday.

It was a triumph too for coach Fabien Galthie, who has revamped France since taking over following their disappointing quarter-final exit at the 2019 World Cup in Japan.

France were runners-up in 2020 and again in 2021 but this year they deservedly went one better and did so with the tenth Grand Slam in their history.

“This is our third Six Nations together – the first two we failed but not by much,” scrumhalf Dupont told reporters.

“You can use all the superlatives you want, but we just want to savour this together.”

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When it was put to Dupont he was now in a line of French Grand Slam captains that includes Christian Carrere (1968) and Jean-Pierre Rives (1981), he replied with a smile: “You’ve forgotten Fabien Galthie (2002)!

“[Saturday], we’ve created memories – first we want to win for ourselves, for the staff and for our fans. We wanted to write our own history.”

As for the World Cup – a trophy France have yet to win despite appearing in three finals – Dupont said: “Of course, this is in our mind. It’s impossible to avoid.

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“But right now we are going to make the most of this victory, this Grand Slam.

“We’ll think about the future later.”

‘Crazy’

For Melvyn Jaminet, who kicked 10 points against England, France’s clean sweep completed a fairytale few months.

“I don’t think it has sunk in yet,” he said. “The Grand Slam is not something you get every year.

“For me to win the Six Nations the first time I played in it is just crazy, it’s unbelievable,” the Perpignan back added.

“I know where I’ve come from, it has all been crazy fast – six months ago, I was playing in the second division and now I’m a Grand Slam winner.”

England coach Eddie Jones paid tribute to Dupont’s men by saying: “France are deserved champions of the Six Nations, they are the best team, but we had enough chances to win that game, we just didn’t put them away.”

PV: 23
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