Damian Penaud leads eight-try rout of Italy as France confirm progress in style

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  • Pool A: France 60-7 Italy
  • Hosts book quarter-final place as pool winners

Et voilà. France are through to the quarter-finals after the tournament’s latest mismatch against a demoralised Italy. The unthinkable outcome – a pool-stage exit for Fabien Galthié’s side – had remained a possibility, but was never on the cards from the moment Damian Penaud scored the first of eight French tries in the second minute. France have beaten Italy 14 times consecutively, a run stretching back to 2014.

If the predatory Penaud’s progress is a marker of France’s hopes, their fellow title contenders should be worried. The wing has scored in seven straight matches and 14 times this year. Two tries here took him to second overall in their men’s try-scorers’ chart, with 35, three behind Serge Blanco. As a whole, the French machine is tuning up satisfactorily with top spot in Pool A secured. A potential last-eight collision with Ireland or South Africa, or indeed Scotland, will be a monumental affair.

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Written by Luke McLaughlin at OL Stadium
This news first appeared on https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2023/oct/06/rugby-world-cup-damien-penaud-leads-rout-of-italy-as-france-confirm-progress-in-style under the title “Damian Penaud leads eight-try rout of Italy as France confirm progress in style”. Bolchha Nepal is not responsible or affiliated towards the opinion expressed in this news article.