France 'drained' after 'boxing fight'
REACTION: France coach Fabien Galthie said the Six Nations was like a “boxing fight” after they missed out on the title following Friday’s home defeat to Scotland.
Les Bleus needed a four-try victory and a win by at least 21 points to claim the Championship but lost 23-27 after Duhan van der Merwe’s try in additional time.
Galthie’s men ended runners-up for a second successive season following matches that were all decided by four points or fewer apart from the opening 50-10 rout of Italy.
“It was a permanent boxing fight so obviously everyone was drained on our resources,” Galthie said.
“It’s possible that the series of matches tired out our resources. If you see the match scenarios, they were won in the last play.
“It was won on inches. The team finished the competition with a very intense experience,” he added.
Captain Charles Ollivon challenged his side to take things from the late losses to England (20-23) and to Scotland.
“There’s a lot of disappointment and frustration in terms of the scenario of the match. We controlled it but let it go,” he said.
“Frankly, we’ll learn from these cruel scenarios. We have to come back stronger for the next encounter. Finishing second is not nothing.
“Even if every member of the squad would have liked to finish with a win.”