Monday, 22 February 2016

No Monsiuer Smith For France

 France have been forced to pull David Smith, a late call-up, out of their plans for Friday’s Six Nations match with Wales after discovering he did not qualify to play for Les Bleus.

The embarrassment for the French Rugby Federation emerged only hours after the Samoa-born wing was brought in to cover injuries in the squad.

After Marvin O’Connor and Teddy Thomas were ruled out by problems sustained on club duty over the weekend, the head coach, Guy Novès, summoned the wings Djibril Camara and Smith.

But Castres’ Smith informed French officials he had played for New Zealand at the 2008 Edinburgh Sevens, scuppering his prospect of a debut in Cardiff.

In a statement on its website, the FFR said it had a document dating from August 2014 which indicated the 29-year-old Smith “appeared eligible” for France.

“On his arrival, David revealed to us he played in 2008 at Edinburgh in the international Sevens tournament for New Zealand,” the FFR said. “Because of this fact, David Smith isn’t eligible for selection for the France XV according to international rules and will be released from the squad on Monday morning.”

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