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Saturday, 16 November, 2002, 22:24 GMT
All Blacks escape with draw
New Zealand's Marty Holah takes on Thomas Castaignede (left) and Francois Gelez
New Zealand's Holah takes on France single-handedly
France 20-20 New Zealand

New Zealand avoided a second successive defeat on their tour of Europe.

But they needed the home side to miss two late penalties, one in farcical circumstances, to escape with a share of the spoils in Paris.

As Francois Gelez prepared to take the first of those penalties, the ball fell over.


I think we were on top throughout but we paid the price for our own mistakes
France captain
Fabien Galthie

But instead of asking the referee for permission to replace it, the 23-year-old fly-half touched it with his foot.

And that denied him the chance to land what seemed a straight-forward kick at goal.

France, who beat South Africa last weekend, scored two tries through Olivier Magne and Nicolas Brusque, with Gelez kicking 10 points.

Kees Meeuws and Tana Umaga touched down for the All Blacks, with the boot of Andrew Mehrtens adding the rest of his side's points.

France were first on the board, Magne touching down on 10 minutes and Gelez adding the extras.

Olivier Magne goes on the attack for France
Magne shrugs off the New Zealand defence
Mehrtens, who had a shaky start to the game, then reduced the deficit with a penalty on 22 minutes before Meeuws powered over following a close-range line-out.

Mehrtens added the conversion to make it 10-7, but France hit back when Mark Robinson was sent to the sin-bin for punching.

Gelez slotted the resultant penalty to make it 10-10 on the stroke of halftime.

The French were dominant up front but soon found themselves behind again when Mehrtens kicked a penalty.

New Zealand then extended their lead when Umaga blasted over between the posts.

Mehrtens converted but the French hit back immediately when Imanol Harinordoquy fed Brusque.

France try to get to grips with Jonah Lomu
Jonah Lomu takes on the France defence
The full-back hit the ball at pace and slid over from 10 yards out with three defenders hanging off him.

The conversion put the hosts back within three points.

And they drew level when Gelez slotted a penalty with three minutes remaining.

Gelez then had two chances to win it but blew it both times.


Launch new window : Tri-Nations profiles
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France: N Brusque; V Clerc, T Castaignede, D Traille, C Heymans; F Gelez, F Galthie (capt); I Harinordoquy, O Magne, S Betsen; F Pelous, O Brouzet; P de Villiers, R Ibanez, J-J Crenca.
Replacements: J-B Rue, S Marconnet, T Privat, S Chabal, D Yachvili, G Merceron, X Garbajosa.

New Zealand: C Cullen; D Howlett, T Umaga, M Robinson, J Lomu; A Mehrtens, D Lee; S Broomhall, M Holah, T Randall; B Mika, A Williams; K Meeuws, A Hore, J McDonnell.
Replacements: K Mealamu, C Hayman, K Robinson, R So'oialo, S Devine, P Steinmetz, B Blair.

 NOV 16-17 TESTS
 ENGLAND 32-31 AUS
 SCOTLAND 26-6 SA
 IRELAND 64-17 FIJI
 WALES 32-21 CANADA
 FRANCE 20-20 NZ
 ITALY 6-36 ARGENTINA

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