World Cup hope given to rest of world as France's confidence goes too far
By Rugby Onslaught

World Cup hope given to rest of world as France’s confidence goes too far

How do you judge how a team’s preseason is going before a World Cup? Do you base it on performances on the pitch? Do you base it on the final squads? Or do you base it on the fact that a team’s loosehead prop is practicing their goal kicking?

If anyone thought France were in a good position heading into their home World Cup, Cyril Baille has basically proven that this week. While Les Bleus actually registered a loss against Scotland in Edinburgh on Saturday, there will be high spirits in the camp this week as that was a second or third string France team that pushed Scotland all the way.

Baille was not part of the contingent that narrowly lost to Scotland at Murrayfield, instead the 116kg prop was practicing his goal kicking. That is a fairly good sign that France are in a comfortable position.

While England’s backs are practicing how to score tries, their forwards are desperately learning how to scrummage and win and lineout, and the entire squad are working out how to catch a ball, France’s props are kicking. If that does not show the difference in where both teams are currently, it is hard to know what does.

The worst thing for England is that it looks like Baille is doing better with his kicking currently than Steve Borthwick’s players are doing in any department of the game. The only positive for all other countries at the World Cup is that France might well be too confident. There is a thin line between cockiness and confidence, and goal kicking props is usually an indication that you have crossed that line.

Take a look:

It’s over boys. Props truly are the perfect specimens.
by u/ComprehensiveDingo0 in rugbyunion


Following the loss to Scotland, France host them in a return fixture this weekend in Saint-Etienne before two final warm-up matches against Fiji and Australia. After that, it is the All Blacks in the opening match of the World Cup at the Stade de France in a match that could easily be repeated in the final. It is unlikely Baille will be on kicking duty for that match, but it depends on how confident they are.