Belfast Telegraph

Sunday 13 July 2014

France determined to halt dismal run

Thierry Dusautoir admits France are desperate to end their losing streak against Ireland

Thierry Dusautoir insists France must not be intimidated by the possibility of slumping to their worst sequence of results in the RBS 6 Nations for 86 years.

If Les Bleus fail to master Ireland at the Aviva Stadium on Saturday their winless run in the championship will extend to seven matches, an event last seen in 1927. It has been a dismal Six Nations for the pre-tournament favourites, who are seeking to avoid a first whitewash since 1957 and first wooden spoon since 1999.

"In sport anything can happen. That's what makes it interesting and why fans pay to buy a ticket," Dusautoir said.

"You never know who is going to win. I'm not thinking about losing tomorrow, if it happens, it happens. Maybe at 7pm we talk about our record."

While France's recent form has been startlingly bad, their record against Ireland is tremendous having been beaten in the fixture just once in 13 meetings dating back to 2003.

Dusautoir, however, believes the statistic is rendered irrelevant by his team's performance so far in this Six Nations.

"Most important for us is what we've done in this Six Nations. We lost our three first games. The guys don't care about what happened in the last 10 years," the Toulouse openside said.

"All that matters is what's happened in this tournament and what we are going to do tomorrow. We are starting over and I hope we are able to win. It's always very difficult to win in Dublin, so we need to play fantastic rugby.

"The spirit of the camp is determination to win a match. We don't listen to outside comment because we have enough motivation. We're working on our game and refining our play.

"We're not thinking about the wooden spoon. We want to come off the pitch with a smile on our faces having at last got a victory."

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