Antoine Dupont driven to succeed after Rugby World Cup heartbreak

David Skippers
Antoine Dupont Toulouse v Harlequins Champions Cup 2023 - Alamy.jpg

Antoine Dupont in action for Toulouse against Harlequins in the Champions Cup.

France scrum-half and captain Antoine Dupont is relishing the prospect of making the switch to Sevens and representing his country at the 2024 Olympic Games in Paris.

It was revealed last month that the 27-year-old would make the switch to the shortened version of the game and he is excited by the prospect of making that change.

Set for Sevens switch

Dupont is set to represent his country at two World Rugby Sevens Series tournaments in February and March, which means he will not be involved in France‘s Six Nations campaign in 2024.

However, he is set to return to action for his club, Toulouse, in the Top 14 before returning to Sevens, where he will play for France at the Olympics in July.

“I will have to work a lot to be competitive in all the competitions,” Dupont told the BBC. “The last time (playing Sevens) was U18, I think, but it is the same sport and there are a lot of things similar.

“I will have to do my best. I have a lot of calls with the coach to try to learn some skills, and I will try to learn by watching the game.

“Yes, it’s hard (to miss the Six Nations), but I have to make choices, unfortunately.”

Dupont was in fine form for Toulouse at the weekend as he played a leading role in his team’s 47-19 Champions Cup victory over Harlequins at Twickenham Stoop.

The result means the Top 14 outfit have a full house of 10 points – after they also sealed a bonus-point win over Cardiff in their tournament opener – and they are in joint top spot with Bath on the Pool Two table.

Chasing Champions Cup success

Dupont revealed that he is motivated by France’s World Cup disappointment after they were knocked out by eventual champions South Africa in a thrilling quarter-final at the Stade de France in Paris.

“When you lose a competition, you want to do another thing to try to win again,” he said.

“The Champions Cup is always a special competition for us, and I think we saw the last two weeks that we are very motivated for this competition.”

Despite having plenty on his plate in two different sports codes, Dupont is not complaining and relishes the challenge.

“I will have a very busy year, but I love that and I am excited,” he said.

READ MORE: Who’s hot and who’s not: Black Lion’s historical win, Andy Farrell’s new Ireland deal and the Eddie Jones saga