France 7-12 South Africa – Rugby World Cup LIVE: Damian de Allende puts the Springboks ahead as they stun Stade de France
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Follow Mail Sport’s live blog as France take on South Africa in the quarter-finals of the Rugby World Cup with France captain Antoine Dupont returning to action after suffering a facial fracture earlier in the tournament.

Ramos’ kick falls short (7-7)

Ramos lined his kick up perfectly but didn’t get quite enough power on it from the halfway line as his effort drops just short.

South Africa are under pressure in their five metre zone but some excellent running from Libbok gets them out of danger.

Electric start in Paris shows no signs of slowing down (7-7)

We have been treated to some absollutely sensational rugby during the opening exchanges, largely dominated by kicks disrupting both teams defences and some nervous mistakes creeping in.

South Africa are doing more of the defending as they give a way a penalty at the ruck.

Try converted (7-7)

It’s a kick from wide but Libbok makes no mistake as his effort just bends in the right side of the post.

South Africa TRY (7-5)

What a game this is turning out ot be and we are less than 10 minutes into as South frica respond with a blow of their own. A high ball isn’t dealt with by France as Kurt-Lee Arendse pounces and has open space to run into. Electric response.

Try converted (7-0)

The conversion is made to look easy and France have a clear lead early on.

TRY FRANCE (5-0) Cyril Baille

There’s no stopping this France maul as they power towards the try line off a lineout deep in the Springboks half before quickly moving the ball wide and crashing the ball over the line. What a start from France!

KICK OFF: South Africa get us underway in Paris (0-0)

Anthems DONE

The national anthems are complete, South Africa’s in particular felt like it went on for an an eternity but was well respected by all inside the ground.

Now we are ready to get underway.

South Africa must not fall behind early

They’ve been here before and got the trophy to prove it, but it’s vital South Africa don’t fall behind early on because if France get their tails up then there will be absolutely no stopping them.

The home crowd will be baying for blood once the match kicks off as the thousands inside the Stade de France look to be France’s 16th-man against the Springboks.

Expect a lightning start to proceedings, France will want to score early but South Africa must hold out or they could be in for a long evening.

South Africa's scrum-half Faf de Klerk kicks the ball during the warm up ahead of the France 2023 Rugby World Cup quarter-final match between France and South Africa at the Stade de France in Saint-Denis, on the outskirts of Paris, on October 15, 2023. (Photo by Anne-Christine POUJOULAT / AFP) (Photo by ANNE-CHRISTINE POUJOULAT/AFP via Getty Images)
Rugby Union - Rugby World Cup 2023 - Quarter Final - France v South Africa - Stade de France, Saint-Denis, France - October 15, 2023 France players before the match REUTERS/Gonzalo Fuentes

How will Dupont fare tonight?

The fact that the France captain is available tonight is a miracle in itself after he broke his cheekbone during a pool match against Namibia. Dupont underwent surgery and three weeks later is featuring in tonight’s Rugby World Cup quarter-final clash.

How fit is he? Well we will find out as soon as he goes into contact tonight. South Africa will look to target Dupont and test whether he has made a full recovery or not. Protecting your face in rugby is difficult and if he gets hit hard then you fear whether Dupont will be able to carry on.

At his best Dupont is arguably the best player in the world and the key to how this fantastic French team like to play with flair and power. He isn’t here just to take part and Dupont will be determined to guide his nation to a famous victory.

France's Antoine Dupont kicks the ball as he warms-up before the Rugby World Cup quarterfinal match between France and South Africa at the Stade de France in Saint-Denis, near Paris Sunday, Oct. 15, 2023. (AP Photo/Thibault Camus)

France have never had a better opportunity to win the World Cup

For all of their brilliance over the last two-years that has seen France take world rugby by the scruff of the neck and show the rest of the globe just how big of a dominant force they are, Les Blues are still the only team ever to appear in a World Cup final without winning one.

The tournament hosts have made it to the final three times, most recently in 2011 against New Zealand, but have never won and will be determined to change that record in Paris this year.

The only thing standing in their way is tonight’s clash against South Africa, England in the semi-final and either New Zealand or Argentina in the final. Easy right?

30 minutes until kick-off in Paris

We are just 30 minutes away from the ball being booted into the air and France embarking on their quarter-final journey against the reigning world champions.

There are so many talking points going into this clash and you’ll be able to follow every key moment from the Stade de France right here with us.

Will Antoine Dupont be ok after recovering from surgery? How will he protect his face? Have South Africa learned their lessons from their pool defeat against Ireland? All that will be answered shortly.

PARIS, FRANCE - OCTOBER 15: Captains Siya Kolisi of South Africa and Antoine Dupont of France interact at The Asahi Coin Toss prior to the Rugby World Cup France 2023 Quarter Final match between France and South Africa at Stade de France on October 15, 2023 in Paris, France. (Photo by David Ramos - World Rugby/World Rugby via Getty Images)

Dupont’s return a major boost for France

The big news for France is the return of Antoine Dupont from a facial fracture. Having the 26-year-old available again will be a significant boost.

England await the winners

As alluded to, the winners of this game will play England in the semi-finals.

England managed to reach that stage after overcoming Fiji with a 30-24 victory.

South Africa team

Damian Willemse, Kurt-Lee Arendse, Jesse Kriel, Damian de Allende, Cheslin Kolbe, Manie Libbok, Cobus Reinach; Duane Vermeulen, Pieter-Steph du Toit, Siya Kolisi (captain), Franco Mostert, Eben Etzebeth, Frans Malherbe, Bongi Mbonambi, Steven Kitshoff.

Reserves: Deon Fourie, Ox Nche, Vincent Koch, RG Snyman, Kwagga Smith, Faf de Klerk, Handre Pollard, Willie le Roux.

France team

Thomas Ramos, Damian Penaud, Gael Fickou, Jonathan Danty, Louis Bielle-Biarrey, Matthieu Jalibert, Antoine Dupont (captain); Gregory Alldritt, Charles Ollivon, Anthony Delonch, Thibaud Flament, Cameron Woki, Uini Atonio, Peato Mauvaka, Cyril Baille.

Reserves: Pierre Bourgarit, Reda Wardi, Dorian Aldegheri, Romain Taofifenua, Francois Cros, Sekou Macalou, Maxime Lucu, Yoram Moefana.


Welcome to our live coverage of the last World Cup quarter-final as France take on South Africa.

An intriguing encounter is in prospect, with the winners to take on England in the last four.

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