In Round 1, both sides had endured different luck. France had played well and were unlucky to not win against England with Scotland snatching a famous win over Ireland.
It was France who got off to the best start with Camille Lopez notching a penalty. Scotland fought hard the Scots star Stuart Hogg danced past Baptiste Serren to score his third try of the tournament. Surely he has nailed on his Lions starting spot?! Greig Laidlaw’s conversion hit the crossbar so it was only a 5 point score.
Injury then struck Scotland when captain and key scrum-half Greig Laidlaw was replaced by Ali Price when his ankle got caught under a tackle. That was a worry for the future and Scotland needed to think about the game. Lopez hit another penalty but the killer blow came shortly after. Virimi Vakatawa and Sebastien Vahaamahina carrinng hard at Huw Jones opened up space and Gael Fickou went low into try scorer Hogg and got one himself. Lopez fired the conversion over from the touchline.
Scotland did manage to get themselves back in before halftime with Finn Russell hitting two penalties.
Russell was then making magic again with a wonderful on the floor out the back pass to Tommy Semour and danced down the right touchline. He chipped over the top of Scott Spedding and chased his own kick. The bounce beat every French player and landing back in Semour’s hands. Tim Swinson was in support and he received the pass to take the lead back for Scotland. Finn Russell tried to take a quick conversion and he stepped up to strike the ball, it fell of the tee and the Glasgow fly half’s kick sailed underneath the crossbar from slap bang in front of the posts!
That miss turned out to be crictical with Lopez hitting another penalty to level the scores.
France then came ever so close to a second try when Remi Lamerat reached out and ‘fumbled’ the ball. However, on closer inspection, Lamerat’s little finger seemed to still be touching the ball. The TMO saw otherwise and gave Scotland the benfit of the doubt.
Finn Russell likes to play a risky game but that put Scotland under alot of pressure when a pass did not come off. Maxime Machenaud jackaled the ball and Jaco Peyper awarded France a critical penalty which Lopez duly sent flying through the uprights.
It wasn’t all up but it was Lopez again who hit his fifth penalty of the match and sealed the win. Scotland will be devastastd as the game was theirs where as France will be very pleased with that victory.