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Sunday 22
September

Rugby Union

France battering leaves Townsend rattled

18th August 2019, 16:21 by Craig Smithson

Coach Gregor Townsend has warned Scotland they have "a lot of work to do" ahead of the World Cup after the 32-3 defeat against France.

The Dark Blues went into the game in Nice looking for some valuable preparation game-time ahead of next month's tournament, which gets underway in Japan on September 20.

However, it ended up being a chastening experience as Les Bleus ran in five tries courtesy of Maxime Medard's double and further scores from debutant Alivereti Raka, Gregor Alldritt and Antoine Dupont.

Afterwards, Townsend, who names his final 31-man squad on September 3, said: "There's a lot of work to do. We expected a better performance.

"We go into every game we play, no matter the opponent, with the aim of winning and we believed as players and coaches that we were well-prepared for that game.

"Obviously that wasn't correct. We missed parts of that first half just from not being in place quick enough to stop France getting quick ball and then not capitalising on opportunities we did have.

"France were very good, they seemed like they were in really good condition.

"We know our players are in very good physical condition but obviously tonight the match conditioning fell short but we will be better for the experience.

"But we have to be much, much better in terms of performance over the next three games and then when we get to Japan."

Scotland will host France in Edinburgh next weekend and Townsend has revealed that he will be making sweeping changes to the starting XV.

He added: "We will be demanding a reaction from the players. They will be demanding it too. The target this week will be to show a much truer image of ourselves."

This article originated on sportinastorm.com

Craig Smithson is a journalist with over two decades of experience at the keyboard. A life-long Middlesbrough fan, Craig has an in-depth knowledge of all football and is also a keen fan of boxing amongst other sports.

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