Sevens rugby: a final test before the Olympics for Antoine Dupont's Blues in Madrid this weekend

Sevens rugby: a final test before the Olympics for Antoine Dupont's Blues in Madrid this weekend

Après les tournois de Vancouver et Los Angeles, Antoine Dupont retrouvera l'équipe de France VII à Madrid. MAXPPP – Ethan Cairns

Pour leur dernière échéance avant leur objectif olympique, l'équipe de France de rugby à VII et sa nouvelle vedette Antoine Dupont veulent confirmer leur montée en puissance prometteuse en fin de semaine à Madrid lors de la finale du circuit mondial.

Emblematic captain of the best nations compete for the title, for men and women.

The French rugby star, who has just won the Champions Cup with Stade Toulouse, has been released by his club, already assured of playing in the Top 14 semi-finals with two days to go of the regular phase for this final tournament which will take place from May 31 to June 2.

The Blues, 6th in the ranking, far behind Argentina and Ireland, no longer have any chance of winning the world circuit but could do so ;offer a second coronation after that of Los Angeles last March.

Showing a tremendous ability to adapt despite a much more sustained and intense pace than at XV, Antoine Dupont helped the Blues win their first tournament since 2005.< /p>

"Winning gold (in Los Angeles) sent a signal to everyone" , estimated coach Jérôme Daret. "France is there and is now a little more scary. We push everyone, we are in the wheel and the objective now is to use this aspiration to try to overtake everyone at the right time."

After this successful North American tour (gold in Los Angeles, bronze in Vancouver) the French team, deprived of its new star, experienced two other competitions with different fates: a beautiful second place in Hong Kong and a disappointing eighth place in Singapore.

Medal objective in Paris

In Madrid, no more a land of rugby than the other destinations on the circuit, the state of form of Dupont, named man of the match in the European Cup final last week, and his & ;quot;septists" will be particularly scrutinized, to assess France's chances of winning a medal at home in Paris.

"We are a very ambitious group who want to give themselves the means to win this medal this summer. We are all in this perspective to work hard. We want to do something big", warned Antoine Dupont.

Among the women, the Blues, outgoing Olympic vice-champions, will seek to finish in style in the Spanish capital, less than a month before the start of the Olympic tournament.

They have already consolidated their place among the three best nations in the world behind New Zealand and Australia during the last two stages in Asia.

Les Bleues will face Australia, Fiji and Ireland in a very tough Group B with a view to qualifying for the semi-finals, while the New Zealand, reigning Olympic champion and Series champion, will play in Pool A alongside the United States, Canada and Great Britain. For the boys, the draw brought together the & #39;Argentina, Australia, France and Great Britain in Pool A.

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