France national rugby league team

France National Rugby League Team

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France national rugby league team

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The France national rugby league team represent France in international rugby league tournaments. They are also sometimes referred to as "Les Tricolores" or more commonly "Les Chanticleers". The team is run under the auspices of the Fédération Française de Rugby à XIII and is largely made up of players from Super League and the Elite One Championship.

The French rugby league team first played in 1934 on a tour of England. They have taken part in all World Cups, twelve in total, with the first being held in 1954 in France. They have never won the title but have finished runners-up in both 1954 and 1968. These are often considered the glory years of French rugby league as in the 1950s and 1970s the team were strong and regularly beat Australia, New Zealand and Great Britain. Since those days though, the Tricolores have not done so well, not managing to win a single match in the 1995 World Cup, but doing slightly better in the 2000 World Cup comfortably beating Tonga and South Africa, before losing to eventual finalists New Zealand.

In 2006, the Perpignan based team Catalans Dragons entered Super League Europe, and have since produced a number of top-class French players. Despite improved professionalism France finished 10th in the 2008 World Cup in Australia. The team will play in the 2013 World Cup.

Currently the team are ranked fifth in the world, behind Fiji. In Europe alone they are ranked second, ahead of Ireland, Scotland and Lebanon, but behind...
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