France make nine changes for team versus Argentina

Bernard Laporte continues to surprise as he selects fly-half David Skrela at centre in one of nine changes for Friday’s World Cup third-place tie against Argentina in the Parc De Princes Paris KO 2000 BST. Damien Traille also reverts to centre, which means Clement Poitrenaud resumes at full-back, while Aurelien Rougerie and Christophe Dominici start on the wings. Frederic Michalak plays at fly-half, with hooker Raphael Ibanez captaining the side in probably his last Test. Lionel Nallet comes in at lock for the injured Fabien Pelous. The surprise is there is no place, even on the bench, for veteran flanker Serge Betsen. Whilst prop Pieter de Villiers, lock Jerome Thion, and flanker Thierry Dusautoir all keep their places. Sebastien Chabal starts on the bench after being cleared by a disciplinary panel on Monday of a dangerous tackle on England’s Simon Shaw during the 14-9 semi-final defeat.

France Team V Argentina

Backs: Poitrenaud, Rougerie, Skrela, Traille, Dominici, Michalak, Elissalde.
Forwards: Poux, Ibanez (C), De Villiers, Nallet, Thion, Nyanga, Dusautoir, Harinordoquy.

Replacements: Bruno, Mas, Chabal, Martin, Mignoni, Beauxis, Clerc.