France national rugby union team

France National Rugby Union Team

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France national rugby union team

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<!--This article is written in British English-->

The France national rugby union team represents France in the rugby union. They compete annually against England, Ireland, Italy, Scotland and Wales in the Six Nations Championship. They have won the championship outright sixteen times, shared it a further eight times, and have completed nine grand slams. Eight former French players have been inducted into either the International Rugby Hall of Fame or the IRB Hall of Fame—two to the International Hall only, two to the IRB Hall only, and four to both Halls of Fame.

Rugby was introduced to France in 1872 by the British, and on New Year's Day 1906 the national side played its first Test match — against New Zealand in Paris. France played sporadically against the Home Nations until they joined them to form a Five Nations tournament (now the Six Nations Championship) in 1910. France also competed in the rugby competitions at early Summer Olympics, winning the gold medal in 1900 and two silver medals in the 1920s. France came of age during the 1950s and 1960s, and won their first Five Nations title outright in 1959. They won their first Grand Slam in 1968. Since the inaugural World Cup in 1987, France have qualified for the knock-out stage of every tournament. They have reached the final twice, losing to the All Blacks in 1987 and to Australia in 1999. France hosted the 2007 Rugby World Cup, where, as in 2003, they were beaten in the semi finals by England.

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