Bastareaud left out of Noves' first France squad


Guy Noves has announced his first France squad since being appointed as head coach, with Mathieu Bastareaud among the notable absentees in the group selected for a training day.

Centre Bastareaud, capped 39 times and man of the match in Toulon's 16-15 2013 Heineken Cup final win over Clermont Auvergne, Brice Dulin and Sebastien Tillous-Borde are among those to miss out as the new coach opts to introduce more youth to the set-up.

Noves, who spent the previous 22 years at Toulouse, replaced Philippe Saint-Andre after his tenure ended with a disappointing 2015 Rugby World Cup.

Sebastian Bezy, Jefferson Poirot and Paul Jedrasiak have subsequently been included in the squad for the first time, while Yacouba Camara and Jonathan Danty return.

France have lost former captain Thierry Dusautoir, Frederic Michalak and Pascal Pape among others to retirement, and only 15 players from the World Cup squad remain.

The 30-man group meet in Marcoussis for the day on January 4 before another squad is selected for a training camp beginning on January 11 ahead of the Six Nations.

France start their campaign at home to Italy on February 6.

France squad in full:

Forwards: Uini Atonio (La Rochelle), Eddy Ben Arous (Racing 92), Yacouba Camara (Toulouse), Damien Chouly (Clermont Auvergne), Alexandre Flanquart (Stade Francais), Loann Goujon (Bordeaux), Guilhem Guirado (Toulon), Paul Jedrasiak (Clermont Auvergne), Benjamin Kayser (Clermont), Wenceslas Lauret (Racing 92), Bernard Le Roux (Racing 92), Yoann Maestri (Toulouse), Louis Picamoles (Toulouse), Jefferson Poirot (Bordeaux), Rabah Slimani (Stade Francais) Sebastian Vahaamahina (Clermont Auvergne).

Backs: Sebastien Bezy (Toulouse), Hugo Bonneval (Stade Francais), Jonathan Danty (Stade Francais), Alexandre Dumoulin (Racing 92), Benjamin Fall (Montpellier), Gael Fickou (Toulouse), Wesley Fofana (Clermont Auvergne), Remi Lamerat (Castres), Maxime Machenaud (Racing 92), Maxime Medard (Toulouse), Morgan Parra (Clermont Auvergne), Jules Plisson (Stade Francais), Scott Spedding (Clermont Auvergne), Francois Trinh Duc (Montpellier).