France lock shown red card for disgusting elbow attack on Wales rival

Ross Houston
October 20, 2019

France's Sebastien Vahaamahina leaves the field after receiving a red card during their quarterfinal against Wales.

France held a 19-10 lead when Vahaamahina made his shamed exit from the scene and had over 30 minutes to survive against a Wales side that beat them from 16-0 behind during this year's Six Nations. It was unfortunate as France had the better of the attacking opportunities and were cutting holes in the Welsh defence through some swashbuckling play from flyhalf Romain Ntamack, centre Virimi Vakatawa and wing Damian Penaud especially.

There were signs that Vahaamahina's discipline would let him down but his barnstorming opening try showed why France went with him at lock.

"There was obviously an advantage with the red card". They honestly had the better of play but were let down by not finishing their opportunities.

"When Ross Moriarty was sent to the sin-bin 90 seconds after coming on as a first-half replacement, the tide swung back in favour of the French".

It was hardly a flawless performance from the Welsh.

Wales, jolted by the loss of injured centre Jonathan Davies minutes before kick-off, were in disarray.

The game was still there, more so when Vahaamahina was banished in the 49th minute. First, Vahaamahina muscled over from close range and then a breakaway from the ensuing kickoff saw flank Charles Ollivon on hand to finish off.

Through some incredible defence, it looked like France may pull off a massive upset.

Ross Moriarty of Wales scores his team's second try. Conversion: Dan Biggar (2). Virimi Vakatawa went over to extend their lead at the break.

"We were slow out of the blocks", Wales captain Alun Wyn Jones said in a post-match television interview.

Wales face France off the back of four pool stage wins but winger Josh Adams admits Warren Gatland's men are still looking to deliver the flawless performance.

However, a French gift presented them with a route back into the contest, captain Guilhem Guirado conceding possession in midfield to allow Wainwright a clear, if long, run to the line.

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