In the opening game of the Rugby World Cup 2023 at the Stade de France, France overcame an early deficit to defeat New Zealand 27–13.
Fullback for France at the Stade de France, the hosts defeated New Zealand thanks to 17 points from Thomas Ramos in the tournament’s opening game.
The All Blacks scored after just 92 seconds when Mark Telea touched down Beauden Barrett’s precise cross-kick, but three Ramos penalties helped Les Bleus into a 9-8 half-time lead.
Telea’s second try, from Richie Mo’unga’s floated pass, put New Zealand back in front but after Damian Penaud was denied a try by Mo’unga’s tackle, France seized the momentum.
Penaud took Matthieu Jalibert’s pass to score his 30th test try and after a yellow card for All Blacks wing Will Jordan, two more Ramos penalties and a late Melvyn Jaminet try kicked off a party in Paris.
“We were expecting really hard opposition and it was a massive game. I’m proud to be French tonight,” Mastercard Player of the Match, Gregory Alldritt (FRA), said.
France’s general manager Raphael Ibanez praised their team spirit: “In a World Cup game, especially on the opening day, [that’s] what matters most. That was the case today against a beautiful and fabulous All Blacks team.”