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France team doctor gives update on Dupont

NEWS: The news on the recuperation of France captain Antoine Dupont is “reassuring”, according to team doctor Bruno Boussagol, who said he hoped for a “quick return” to World Cup action for the talismanic scrumhalf.

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Dupont underwent surgery last Friday after suffering a fractured cheekbone the day before in France’s victory over Namibia, putting hosts Les Bleus on the verge of the knock-out stages which take place on the weekend of October 14-15.

France’s next game is against Italy on October 7 when a victory would guarantee top spot in Pool A and a last-eight tie, in all likelihood with World Cup holders South Africa.

“He called me yesterday to get some advice on his follow-up,” said Boussagol.

Dupont, the doctor added, was “doing as well as possible six days after his operation”.

“His bruising has dissipated. He had pain linked to the frontal impact he received, but it is progressing very favorably. He’s in good spirits, he’s pretty confident.”

Dupont will now see the surgeon for his take on his progress before undergoing a head scan.

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“The news is reassuring,” Boussagol said. “We’re side-by-side with him, we’re hoping for a quick return.

“It’s a complex situation to manage: we have a process that requires us to be careful. But his return is conditional on the green light from the surgeon, that’s clear.

“As long as we don’t have that green light from the surgeon, we’re going to wait to talk about his return to play.”

Boussagol added: “His return will be gradual, first on a bike, likely from the start of next week.

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“He is very motivated to come back, but his return to the field will be a gradual one. We’re not looking beyond next week.”

Boussagol insisted that questions over Dupont’s potential fitness for the quarter-finals should not be asked.

“We are only planning on his return to the squad, the resumption of rugby,” he said.

“Obviously, we hope to see him as soon as possible. I don’t think it will be against Italy.

“After that, we will move forward week on week.”

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