Les Bleues surf the “oranje” wave (24-22) and dream further
Les Bleues came back down to earth after hovering over Romania (35-21). This time, the meeting was hung (until 22-22), but the essential is assured.
“Today we had a little more difficulty but we showed that the France team was there”, retains Laura Flippes (3 goals for 4 shots).
A disputed game
Fifteen months after their last face to face, the nightmare oranje of the Yoyogi stadium in Tokyo where the Blues swept them 32-22 by immediately inflicting a scathing 14-4, the story was very different.
“Finishing this first round with a committed match, requiring you to remain mentally strong, and managing to win it, that’s great”, savors Cléopâtre Darleux. “It bonds us well. It was the perfect scenario.”
On the balance sheet too: the vice-champions of Europe and the world take full points in the main round, four, and an advantage on special goal difference against the Dutch.
In good shape
With the first two teams in each main round group advancing to the semi-finals, a clear start is often a guarantee of a good run. Like in 2020 when they only lost in the final against the Norwegians.
Among the teams returned to the Les Bleues group, more than Germany and Spain, it will be necessary to be wary of the Montenegrins, in weightlessness during their first round at home in Podgorica.
The tifos of their boiling public could make the trip to Skopje, only 330 kilometers away, on Sunday for the next match.
Darleux “scares all opponents”
Even more than the first two successes against North Macedonia (24-14) and Romania, this one bears the signature of Cléopâtre Darleux (14 saves, 45% of shots stopped).
“It’s one of our huge strengths in the team. She has experience, she performs incredible competition, super stable. She scares all opponents,” praised Estelle Nze Minko. His eleven parries at halftime are to be compared to the six of his Dutch counterpart.
Curiosity of the calendar, the band of Grace Zaadi and Pauletta Foppa will have three days to work on these phases before the clash against Montenegro, first in group D.