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Dublin: 10 °C Friday 21 February, 2020

South Africa native Spedding one of three debutants for France

Philippe Saint-André has gone for the 13th half-back pairing of his reign as head coach.

Wesley Fofana starts in the 12 shirt, with Alexandre Dumoulin outside him.
Wesley Fofana starts in the 12 shirt, with Alexandre Dumoulin outside him.
Image: Colm O'Neill/INPHO

SOUTH AFRICA-BORN full-back Scott Spedding will make his debut for France in Les Bleus’ Test match against Fiji in Marseille on Saturday.

The 28-year-old, who joined Bayonne from Brive in 2012, was brought into the squad on Wednesday for the November Test series by coach Philippe Saint-Andre following an injury to first-choice number 15 Brice Dulin.

With Maxime Médard also struggling for fitness with a groin injury, the door has suddenly opened for Spedding to earn his first cap.

There are also debuts for two Racing Metro backs – Alexandre Dumoulin in the centre and Teddy Thomas on the wing. Both players have been in impressive form for the Parisian club in the Top 14.

Saint-Andre has gone for a new partnership at half-back in the shape of Sebastien Tillous-Borde of Toulon and Camille Lopez of Clermont, his 13th pairing in the pivotal playmaking positions since taking over in 2012.

Thierry Dusautoir is retained as captain in a back row also containing South Africa native Bernard Le Roux and Damien Chouly.

France team to play Fiji on Saturday:

15. Scott Spedding
14. Yoann Huget
13. Alexandre Dumoulin
12. Wesley Fofana
11. Teddy Thomas
10. Camille Lopez
9. Sebastien Tillous-Borde

1. Alexandre Menini
2. Guilhem Guirado
3. Nicolas Mas
4. Pascal Pape
5. Yoann Maestri
6. Thierry Dusautoir (capt.)
7. Bernard Le Roux
8. Damien Chouly

Replacements from:

Benjamin Kayser, Uini Atonio, Xavier Chiocci, Alexandre Flanquart, Sebastien Vahaamahina, Charles Ollivon, Rory Kockott, Remi Tales, Mathieu Bastareaud, Maxime Mermoz

- © AFP, 2014

- Additional reporting by

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