Alivereti Raka produced an impressive debut showing to help France beat Scotland 32-3 in a World Cup warm-up in Nice on Saturday.
While the win will be a massive confidence boost for the French – who played some champagne counter-attacking rugby at times – it will be dispiriting for Scotland as Gregor Townsend’s side was woeful on defence, making it far too easy for France to gain metres.
Alivereti Raka, on debut, made a spectacular start to his French career by scoring the opener in just the third minute of play. The Fiji-born wing was a constant threat as he carried strongly and gave France plenty of momentum.
Maxime Medard and No 8 Gregory Alldritt added tries for France, while Adam Hastings, who was sent to the sin bin for a cynical foul towards the end of the first half, kicked a penalty for Scotland’s only points.
France made an excellent start to the second half as another counter-attack, this time started by Dupont, was finished off by Medard, who scored his second of the night. Damian Penaud then broke the line from a poor Scotland clearance kick and passed on his inside to allow Dupont to add a fifth try for France.
While Scotland came close to the French line in the final 10 minutes, they were unable to score, leaving Townsend with plenty to think about before the two sides meet again at Murrayfield next Saturday.
France – Tries: Alivereti Raka, Maxime Medard (2), Gregory Alldritt, Antoine Dupont. Conversions: Camille Lopez (2). Penalty: Lopez.
Scotland –Penalty: Hastings.
France – 15 Maxime Medard, 14 Damian Penaud, 13 Gael Fickou, 12 Wesley Fofana, 11 Alivereti Raka, 10 Camille Lopez, 9 Antoine Dupont, 8 Gregory Alldritt, 7 Charles Ollivon, 6 Francois Cros, 5 Sebastien Vahaamahina, 4 Paul Gabrillagues, 3 Rabah Slimani, 2 Camille Chat, 1 Jefferson Poirot (c).
Subs: 16 Peato Mauvaka, 17 Dany Priso, 18 Emerick Setiano, 19 Felix Lambey, 20 Louis Picamoles, 21 Baptiste Serin, 22 Romain Ntamack, 23 Thomas Ramos.
Scotland – 15 Stuart Hogg, 14 Darcy Graham, 13 Huw Jones, 12 Duncan Taylor, 11 Byron McGuigan, 10 Adam Hastings, 9 Ali Price, 8 Josh Strauss, 7 Jamie Ritchie, 6 John Barclay, 5 Grant Gilchrist, 4 Ben Toolis, 3 Simon Berghan, 2 Stuart McInally (c), 1 Jamie Bhatti.
Subs: 16 George Turner, 17 Gordon Reid, 18 Zander Fagerson, 19 Scott Cummings, 20 Matt Fagerson, 21 George Horne, 22 Rory Hutchinson, 23 Blair Kinghorn.
Photo: Agence Nice Presse/Icon Sport via Getty Images