Guilhem Guirado ruled out of final Six Nations clash

Guilhem Guirado

Guilhem Guirado

France captain Guilhem Guirado will miss France's final Six Nations match against Wales after suffering a knee injury against England.

Wales eventually won the game at a canter, moving above England into second place in the Six Nations table in the process, but Gatland had stern words for a player blessed with enormous natural talent but occasionally prone to hot-headedness.

This was France's second straight victory following a 34-17 defeat of perennial strugglers Italy and a sure sign of their recovery under new coach Jacques Brunel, appointed after Guy Noves was sacked following a miserable two-year spell in charge that yielded just seven victories in 22 matches. "I hope France have been partying after beating England", Gatland said.

"I hope they have been partying all night in Paris after that win - they deserve it", Gatland said.

On a more serious note, however, Gatland paid tribute to the influence of Brunel.

"You have to take your hat off to Jacques Brunel in terms of the discipline he has brought into the squad", said Gatland. They played with discipline against England. "They deserved to win the match".

"Their defence looks strong at the moment, it was good in the first game against Ireland".

"Having a few more games under their belt, a win against Italy, they are showing some cohesion now, having been together for a number of games".

"I think they will be good", he added.

The Saracens star was fortunate to escape with only a yellow card in the 38-14 victory against Italy on Sunday when he launched himself at Azzurri full-back Matteo Minozzi on the stroke of half-time, striking his opponent's head with his shoulder in the act of tackling him over the line.

"He gave away a penalty at the breakdown that he did not need to and while I understood what he was trying to do in the tackle and hit Minozzi as hard as he could, there was a bit of frustration and he caught him high".

Gatland admitted he was "disappointed" with Williams' decision to hit Minozzi so high but was considerably more upbeat about George North's outstanding contribution at the end of a hard week which saw him publicly criticised by Northampton's interim director of rugby Alan Gaffney. I don't want him to lose that emotion. That is what makes him so good: he is physical, has a great work-rate and great energy.

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