21 Sep 2011

Hansen dismisses suggestions of second string French lineup

6:43 pm on 21 September 2011

The All Blacks assistant coach Steve Hansen has dismissed suggestions that France has selected a second string lineup for Saturday's key World Cup pool match at Eden Park.

France have famously sent the All Blacks out of two World Cups, most recently with their shock 20-18 win in the quarter final at victory in Cardiff at the 2007 tournament.

The decision by France coach Marc Livremont's decision to give usual halfback Morgan Parra his first start at first five alongside Dimitri Yachvili at halfback, has sparked suggestions France isn't committed to winning the match which is likely to decide the winner of pool A.

Ireland's surprise victory over Australia last weekend, which looks like resulting in all the Tri-Nations teams ending up on the same side of the draw in the knockout phase, had triggered a swirl of conpsiracy theories around the tournament.