France winger Alivereti Raka scored their second try to created the primary towards Tonga.
France held off a spirited Tonga comeback to win 23-21 and be a part of pool rivals England within the Rugby World Cup quarter-finals.
Les Bleus misplaced 19-14 to Tonga in Wellington eight years in the past in one of many event’s massive upsets. This time, Tonga rallied from 17-Zero down and a late attempt from flanker Zane Kapeli delivered to the rating to inside two factors.
However there was just one minute left and France held agency in a sport the place that they had two second-half tries disallowed following a video overview.
Subsequent Saturday’s match towards England in Yokohama will determine high spot in Pool C between two sides with three wins every.
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Pool C was dubbed “the pool of demise” earlier than the event however England, who thumped Argentina 39-10 on Saturday, and France are the primary two sides within the competitors to verify their place within the quarter-finals. Wales or Australia from Pool D are more likely to await within the final eight.
France led 10-Zero after simply six minutes at Kumamoto Stadium, with first five-eighth Romain Ntamack touchdown a penalty objective and he then transformed middle Virimi Vakatawa’s attempt after he was arrange by a superb break from left winger Alivereti Raka.
The French gave the impression to be within the temper and, after Tonga knocked on about 20 metres out, gained 60 metres by means of a number of phases on a surging counter assault. It ended with Tonga conceding a penalty on their very own 22, however Ntamack miscued from the left.
Raka made two additional robust breaks by means of midfield earlier than capping a wonderful half together with his crew’s second attempt. Taking a fast move from halfback Baptiste Serin, he collected his personal kick forward, judged the bounce properly and rolled over for a attempt after 33 minutes.
Tonga replied with a transformed attempt proper on half-time by Sonatane Takulua, who peeled off the again of the scrum and simply made it over the road. It was awarded following a choice by the Tv Match Official (TMO) and he transformed to chop France’s result in 17-7.
Centre Malietoa Hingano bought Tonga’s second transformed attempt early within the second half, after accumulating proper winger Cooper Vuna’s kick downfield and judging the bounce higher than France fullback Maxime Medard.
Hingano’s attempt got here simply moments after France flanker Charles Ollivon had one disallowed when the TMO confirmed lock Sebastien Vahaamahina feeding him a ahead move.
Ntamack’s two penalties gave France somewhat respiratory house once more at 23-14 with 20 minutes left, and when proper winger Damian Penaud collected alternative halfback Antoine Dupont’s brief move the reduction from French followers was evident.
Their cheers turned to jeers when the TMO confirmed Medard’s arm knocking the ball on when he spilled a excessive kick through the construct as much as the attempt.
AT A GLANCE
France 23 (Virimi Vakatawa, Alivereti Raka tries; Romain Ntamack 2 con, three pen) Tonga 21 (Sonatane Takulua, Malietoa Hingano, Zane Kapeli tries; Takulua 2, Latiume Fosita con). HT: 17-7.
– AP with Stuff