Six Nations: Haouas replaces suspended Atonio for France, Watson back for Scotland

By Sports Desk February 24, 2023

France head coach Fabien Galthie has selected Mohamed Haouas as the replacement for the suspended Uini Atonio for France's Six Nations clash with Scotland.

Atonio was handed a three-week ban for a high tackle on Ireland's Rob Herring, with Haouas coming in at tighthead despite not featuring in France's first two games.

That is the only change made by Galthie from the 32-19 defeat in Dublin on February 11.

Captain Antoine Dupont will play alongside Romain Ntamack in the half-backs, while Yoram Moefana and Gael Fickou remain as the centre pairing.

France have won 18 of their last 19 Test matches on home soil, including their last nine in a row, with their only defeat in that spell coming against Scotland in 2021. They will be aiming to win 10 straight home games for the first time since 1986-1989.

Scotland are looking to make it three wins from three after victories over England and Wales, and coach Gregor Townsend has also made just the one alteration to his side from last time out.

The 2021 Six Nations Player of the Championship Hamish Watson comes in to replace Luke Crosbie after recovering from a head injury sustained against New Zealand in December.

Crosbie and Chris Harris are not even named on the bench, with Sam Skinner coming in, while Ali Price is also back and among the replacements.

Stuart Hogg went off with a head injury in Scotland's defeat of Wales in round two, but has been passed fit to start.

France XV: Thomas Ramos, Damian Penaud, Gael Fickou, Yoram Moefana, Ethan Dumortier, Romain Ntamack, Antoine Dupont (c); Cyril Baille, Julien Marchand, Mohamed Haouas, Thibaud Flament, Paul Willemse, Anthony Jelonch, Charles Ollivon, Gregory Alldritt.

Replacements: Gaetan Barlot, Reda Wardi, Sipili Falatea, Romain Taofifenua, Francois Cros, Sekou Macalou, Baptiste Couilloud, Matthieu Jalibert.

Scotland XV: Stuart Hogg, Kyle Steyn, Huw Jones, Sione Tuipulotu, Duhan van der Merwe, Finn Russell, Ben White; Pierre Schoeman, George Turner, Zander Fagerson, Richie Gray, Grant Gilchrist, Jamie Ritchie (c), Hamish Watson, Matt Fagerson.

Replacements: Fraser Brown, Jamie Bhatti, WP Nel, Jonny Gray, Sam Skinner, Jack Dempsey, Ali Price, Blair Kinghorn.

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