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Beauxis makes France return after six years
February 10, 2018
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Marcoussis: Veteran Lionel Beauxis was France coach Jacques Brunel’s surprise inclusion in the starting XV he named to face Scotland in the Six Nations on Sunday, six years since his last cap.

The 32-year-old Beauxis was only added to Brunel’s squad due to a knee ligament injury to teenage fly-half Matthieu Jalibert in last weekend’s 15-13 defeat to Ireland.

The Lyon half-back’s last appearance for France was in March 2012 against Wales. Brunel said his decision had been influenced by the famously poor Edinburgh weather expected at Murrayfield.

“We think the weather won’t be very good and so his experience and kicking game will help us relieve the team if the pressure is a bit strong,” said Brunel.

Beauxis is known for having a particularly hefty boot and being a reliable place kicker: he has amassed more than 2,000 points during a career that has seen him win the Top 14 title with giants Stade Francais and Toulouse.

Jalibert, 19, had widey been expected to be replaced by Anthony Belleau, 21, who played 50 minutes against Ireland after coming off the bench.

However, Belleau missed a crucial late penalty that ultimately cost France as Johnny Sexton won the game with a last-gasp drop goal three minutes beyond the final hooter after an incredible 41 phases of play.

Beauxis made his France debut in 2007 against Italy in the Six Nations and was included in their World Cup squad later that year.

Having begun the tournament as replacement, he was the starting fly-half in France’s memorable quarter-final victory over New Zealand, and then again when the tournament hosts lost to England in the semi-finals.

He is one of three changes to the starting line-up, all injury induced, while powerful No.8 Louis Picamoles is one of three new faces on the replacements bench.

Agence France-Presse

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