Wednesday, 17 April 2024
SportsMatthieu Jalibert, another missed performance but an undisputed starter with the XV...

Matthieu Jalibert, another missed performance but an undisputed starter with the XV of France

Matthieu Jalibert, fly half of the French XV, had difficulty influencing the Blues’ game and made several errors, some of which weighed down his team despite the victory.

A saving chase. The stopwatch showed 79e minute when Kyle Rowe managed to tear apart the defense of the XV of France. The Scottish winger crossed the French camp, making Damian Penaud dizzy and bringing the Murrayfield stadium which was already celebrating the winning try to its feet. Alas, Matthieu Jalibert had not said his last word, squeezing his opponent’s legs just before the line to prevent him from going to queen. The French flyhalf even provoked a forward move from the Scottish finisher. Cold sweats for the Blues, saved by Jalibert whose decisive defensive act made it possible to give a little relief to a late performance during the Blues’ victory against Scotland (16-20).

The opening half of Union Bordeaux-Bègles was eagerly awaited after the missed match last week against Ireland. At the end of another 80 minutes spent on the pitch, he did not reassure any more, revealing shortcomings which, at international level, are paid for in cash. This was particularly the case when the usual replacement for Romain Ntamack (injured) committed a forward on a Scottish candle. The locals made excellent use of the recovered ball to score the first try of the match, flattened by Ben White (7e).

The 10 tricolor also missed two other times on kicking receptions, in its camp (34e49e). If this was not detrimental for the Blues – no points conceded following these errors -, the Bordeaux opener did not gain more credit during the game, being penalized twice, conceding four turnovers and missing two tackles during the game. Also note a key not found at 17e after a penalty won.

Once again associated with his friend from the UBB hinge Maxime Lucu, Matthieu Jalibert did not seem able to really influence the French game, failing to create disorder in the Scottish defense. All the same, it was he who sent Gaël Fickou on trial (31e), with a long jump, allowing France to get back on track. The change in association with the scrum with the entry of Nolan Le Garrec did not really change things on the offensive play of the Blues.

His decisive tackle at the end of the match does not hide the difficulties encountered throughout the match. The Matthieu Jalibert who walks on water in Bordeaux seems far away. However, his new tenure at the opening of the French XV on February 25 against Italy is not subject to any dispute given his club performances. A club-selection ambivalence which the 25-year-old player will have to put an end to in order not to return de facto on the bench when Romain Ntamack returns to the field.

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