France: Romain Ntamack and Cyril Baille start against Australia despite recent injury troubles

Colin Newboult

©Laurent Lairys/MAXPPP - Romain Ntamack of France during the Six Nations 2022 rugby union match between Wales and France on March 11, 2022 at Principality Stadium in Cardiff, Wales - Photo Laurent Lairys /

Toulouse duo Romain Ntamack and Cyril Baille have been thrown straight into Test action despite having very little game time at club level this season.

Ntamack has not featured for Le Rouge et Noir since September while Baille has had just 36 minutes of action in total.

The former takes his place alongside scrum-half and captain Antoine Dupont at half-back for the match against the Wallabies while the latter joins Julien Marchand and Uini Atonio in the front-row.

Interesting back three selections

Elsewhere, Thomas Ramos is selected at full-back following Melvyn Jaminet’s injury, while Yoram Moefana gets the nod over Matthis Lebel on the left wing.

The rest of the backline is as expected with Damian Penaud completing the back three and Jonathan Danty and Gael Fickou lining up at centre.

Up front, Charles Ollivon, who missed the Six Nations due to a lengthy injury but returned for the Japan series in July, starts at flanker, and is alongside Gregory Alldritt and Anthony Jelonch in the back-row.

At lock, Paul Willemse is injured which means Thibaud Flament joins Cameron Woki in the France engine room.

6-2 split

Head coach Fabien Galthie has gone for a 6-2 split on the bench with Peato Mauvaka, Dany Priso, Sipili Falatea, Romain Taofifenua, Kilian Geraci, Sekou Macalou the forward replacements and Maxime Lucu and Matthieu Jalibert covering the backline.

France: 15 Thomas Ramos, 14 Damian Penaud, 13 Gael Fickou, 12 Jonathan Danty, 11 Yoram Moefana, 10 Romain Ntamack, 9 Antoine Dupont (c), 8 Gregory Alldritt, 7 Charles Ollivon, 6 Anthony Jelonch, 5 Thibaud Flament, 4 Cameron Woki, 3 Uini Atonio, 2 Julien Marchand, 1 Cyril Baille
Replacements: 16 Peato Mauvaka, 17 Dany Priso, 18 Sipili Falatea, 19 Romain Taofifenua, 20 Kilian Geraci, 21 Sekou Macalou, 22 Maxime Lucu, 23 Matthieu Jalibert

Date: Saturday, November 5
Venue: Stade de France, Paris
Kick-off: 21:00 local (20:00 GMT)
Referee: Jaco Peyper (South Africa)
Assistant Referees: Ben O’Keeffe (New Zealand), Craig Evans (Wales)
TMO: Tom Foley (England)

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