Novès backed by Laporte

Guy Noves (File)
Guy Noves (File)

Cape Town - Guy Novès has been given the backing of the French rugby president Bernard Laporte, despite going down 3-0 to South Africa in their series.

A 35-12 loss at Ellis Park made it a whitewash of wins for the Springboks, with les Bleus ending their season on a disappointing result.

It doesn't get any easier for Novès as next for France is a home clash with New Zealand in November as they look to turn things around.

"Guy Novès has my support but I cannot accept that we are now ranked as the eighth best rugby nation in the world," Laporte revealed to Le Parisien on Sunday following their defeat in Johannesburg. "Our objective must now be clear, to win three of our four tests in November."

Before the weekend's loss, France were beaten 37-14 and 37-15 to a much-improved South Africa, with Novès reflecting on their exploits.

"There was clear progress between the first two matches and in the third we were only seven down at half-time but then they scored a try that was too easy and it killed all our strategy," the head coach told Reuters.

"You learn that this level that the slightest mistake is expensive. What is certain is that at half-time, we are still in the game. We are at the end of our season and there was a difference in the physical condition and freshness.

"We will leave with the suitcases full of points we need to work on, but it is obvious the players need a holiday. But we will look at the positive elements and I don't think the gap is too big. I think that in November, with the work we did here in South Africa, that we will progress a little bit."

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