The France rugby union team begin their tour of Australia on Saturday as they face off against the Wallabies, in Brisbane.
The series will consist of three games over the next three Saturdays and represents the first tour of Australia by a French international team since 2009.
Kick-off is scheduled for 8 p.m. local time.
Here is how you can watch the start of this classic test match series:
When: Saturday, June 7, at 11 a.m. BST/6 a.m. ET
Where: Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane, Australia.
TV: Sky Sports 1/Sky Sports 1 HD (U.K. only)
Live Stream: Sky Go (U.K. only)
Ewen McKenzie Announces Dynamic Australian Team
Wallabies coach Ewen McKenzie has named a fresh and vibrant looking squad for the first Test match against the touring French party, in Brisbane.
Included in the squad is debutant Sam Carter, who follows in the footsteps of his father in representing his country, per Australian rugby's official website.
Also confirmed are prop James Slipper and No. 8 Wycliff Palu. Both will receive their 50th caps should they appear.
McKenzie was frank about his selection and his leaning toward in-form talent.
He said, per the official website:
We function in a performance environment and so it’s important to reward those who have consistently played at a high level over the course of the season.
This year we’re in a particularly strong position whereby so many of our players have been performing well for their provinces. The margins are so small but it unfortunately does mean that quality players are going to miss out, which is the case for our opening Test against France.
However, selection will always be a week-to-week proposition at a Test level and the challenge now is for those players chosen to continue playing at the high level we know they can.
Both teams will have new captains leading the line with veteran hooker Stephen Moore skippering the Australian side, per Yahoo.
France will be led by prop Nicolas Mas, who takes care of the captaining duties in the absence of Thierry Dusautoir, as reported by Yahoo.
Thierry Dusautoir A Huge Miss
France will be understrength for the first Test match against Australia after announcing that their leader Thierry Dusautoir was not yet ready for action after injury.
ESPN report that the French captain pulled up in training, with France coach Phillipe Saint-Andre quoted as saying:
"He is not 100 percent yet so we prefer to give him one week off to be ready for the second Test."
Dusautoir managed to complete the season with Toulouse but was wary in joining the tour Down Under as he has only recently recovered from arm surgery.
He ripped a bicep which kept him sidelined for four months, per ESPN.
Losing Dusautoir severely hampers France's chances in a match that they would struggle in even when all are fully fit. The captain is such an inspirational figure for his country, and so much rests on his shoulders against world-class opposition.
Australia will be looking to counter this with the strong selection they have made, allowing their in-form pack to dictate. If the Wallabies can get points on the board early on in the game, the French could easily collapse and be handed a humiliating beating.
The match will represent damage limitation from France, and they will be hoping for a resilient performance against a formidable opponent.
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