France have been in the World Cup final three times
France have been in the Rugby World Cup final three times but they have never lifted the trophy. They will attempt to change their fate in the 2023 tournament which they are hosting.
But fans will be looking back to those moments where they came so close. So we thought we would look back too, here’s what happened in those ill-fated finals.
The first time France made it to the final was in 1987 at the first Rugby World Cup. They defeated Fiji and Australia in the quarter and semi-finals respectively and faced New Zealand in the final. However, they did not have enough fire power and the All Blacks blew them out of the water.
France were thumped 29-9 with New Zealand scoring three tries to Les Bleues’ one. After the sobering final it took 12 years for them to find themselves in another one and they got revenge on the way.
The team defeated Argentina in the quarter-final which put them in a last four match against New Zealand. This time they weren’t blown away, in fact they closed out a 43-31 win to clinch their spot in the final. Unfortunately for France they were dished a spoon of their own medicine when Australia, the team they had knocked out in 1987, beat them in the final 35-12.
Another 12 years ticks by, it was 2011 and France were in yet another final. But this time it was in New Zealand and they were against the hosts.
France defeated old foes England and Wales in the quarters and semis and then had the All Blacks to contend with. The final was the lowest scoring Rugby World Cup final ever with the two sides going toe-to-toe. Both sides scored a try, France kicked their conversion and New Zealand didn’t. But New Zealand scored a penalty and it was that one-point difference that sealed them a 8-7 home win.
France have a pattern of being in a Rugby World Cup final every 12 years and they will be hoping it continues. 2011 was their last final and 12 years later they are hosting the tournament.
Can they finally get the win if they do make it to the final again? We will find out in October.
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