Six Nations: Ireland wing James Lowe relishing chance to test himself against ‘world-class’ France

Adam Kyriacou
James Lowe for Ireland

Ireland wing James Lowe is bracing himself for their Six Nations clash with France, whose back three he believes would “put the shi***ers up most teams”.

The two favourites for the Championship collide this weekend in Dublin as the Irish and Les Bleus square off at this early stage in a massive Test match.

Ireland kicked off their Six Nations push with an impressive 34-10 victory over Wales while France edged out Italy, winning 29-24 in Rome last Sunday.

A massive fixture in Dublin

All eyes are now on Dublin on Saturday when Andy Farrell and Fabien Galthie’s sides battle it out for points that could prove key in the final standings.

“I know they would be disappointed with their performance against Italy, and credit to Italy, they fronted up physically,” finisher Lowe said about France.

“That first half was very messy, I think both sides would say that, and then the second half was a proper Test match.

“But we know it’s a different French beast (this week), the France that we know is going to turn up and we’re prepping for that and can’t wait for the opportunity to test ourselves against the team that won the Grand Slam last year.

“They’re a world-class side, they’ve shown it for a good couple of years. Their nine-10 combo (Antoine Dupont and Romain Ntamack) is pretty scary, their back-rowers are world-class, a midfield that’s very dangerous and a back three that would put the sh***ers up most teams.

“Individually they’ve got some pretty good firepower, so hopefully they don’t string it all together. It’s a whole new beast around the corner.”

Many have billed Saturday’s match at the Aviva Stadium as a likely Grand Slam decider, but Lowe was quick to pour cold water on such talk on Tuesday.

“It is the second game of a Six Nations, I don’t want to get too far ahead of ourselves,” said Lowe, with France proving to be an elusive scalp for Ireland.

“And I’m sure they’ll be saying the same things. It’s the old cliche, one game at a time, and we’ll take it like that.

Farrell yet to beat France

“I didn’t know that he (Farrell) hadn’t beaten France; I haven’t beaten France yet so I wouldn’t mind having a go at them as well.

“Last year away from home, we probably gave them a few too many easy points in the first half, fought back in the second but we weren’t quite there.

“I think we’re a different team now compared to where we were 12 months ago and we’re going to go out there and give it a good crack.

“The French are physical, I think it would be silly to say they’re not bigger than us. We think we’re fitter.”

READ MORE: Loose Pass: Cursing the caterpillar, praise for the referees and awful kits