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Last Updated: Tuesday, 4 November, 2003, 02:55 GMT
No surprises in French squad
Fabien Galthie
Galthie will lead France into action against Ireland
France coach Bernard Laporte has named a full-strength side to play Ireland in the World Cup quarter-finals.

After fielding a second-string side in the Pool B victory over the USA last Friday, Laporte has reverted to the XV which crushed Scotland 51-9 in Sydney on 25 October.

The only selection issues for Sunday's match in Melbourne which Laporte had to settle were among the replacements.

South-African born Brian Liebenberg is preferred at centre to Damien Traille, and flanker Patrick Tabacco edges out Christian Labit.

Laporte said that Liebenberg had been included because of his three-try performance against the Americans.

"He is very strong with the ball in his hands and we just felt that he was fresher and readier to play," he added.

Tabacco, he said, gave the French another option in the line-outs, where the Irish excelled in their 17-16 loss to Australia.

Laporte also opted for Nicholas Brusque at full-back over Clement Poitrenaud.

And he maintained the half-back pairing of Frederic Michalak and Fabien Galthie that worked well for the French in the Pool stage.

Ireland are set to name their team on Wednesday


France:
Nicolas Brusque; Aurelien Rougerie, Tony Marsh, Yannick Jauzion, Christophe Dominici; Frederic Michalak, Fabien Galthie (capt); Jean-Jacques Crenca, Raphael Ibanez, Sylvain Marconnet, Fabien Pelous, Jerome Thion, Serge Betsen, Olivier Magne, Imanol Harinordoquy. Replacements: Yannick Bru, Olivier Millou, Olivier Brouzet, Patrick Tabacco, Gerald Merceron, Brian Liebenberg, Pepito Elhorga.





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