How are you coping with the hard blow of Antoine Dupont’s injury?Laurent Labit: Like everyone else, we are worried. We were satisfied with the match but the evening was difficult for us. But we are not going to draw plans on the comet. We are awaiting the opinion of the specialist who will give the verdict and the unavailability, or not, of Antoine. We will wait 48 to 72 hours to find out exactly what will happen in Antoine’s case.

Is there any real hope that his competition isn’t over?Yes, of course. We still have hope that Antoine will continue the adventure with the XV of France. This is why we give ourselves time. We are awaiting the opinion of the competent person to know what exactly is happening, what can or cannot be done. Antoine and the surgeon will make the decision. We cannot plan for the moment.

Is an operation essential? Not at all. This is why you have to be very careful and give the expert time. Only he will tell him what it is. He will request further examinations. For the moment, no decision regarding an operation or not has been made. It is the surgeon who will decide.

Does the importance of an event like the World Cup mean taking a risk? This competition, at home and with a real chance of winning it, is for many the sporting event of a lifetime. We discuss, we exchange but as long as we don’t have the specialist’s decision, we can’t say anything. Antoine’s feelings about the blow received, the evolution of the hematoma… We really have to wait 72 hours. But the surgeon knows very well that we are not in an ordinary situation, but that of a player playing in a World Cup.

What is Antoine Dupont’s state of mind? We can imagine it. When things like this happen… Antoine assumed the worst before the exams. But above all we are waiting for the meeting with the specialist to define what he can do or not, what can be considered, when he could return to training. We must respect this deadline, wait two or three days to consider what could be next for him.

Should we play him against Namibia? We needed to regain commitment and precision. I say it again. For us, today, Antoine did not finish the competition. We have three days ahead of us and we hope to have good news at the end of these three days.

And keep him on the field after half-time? In our schedule, we had planned changes at half-time: the two pillars and Cameron Woki, who had started all three World Cup matches. Then, regarding Antoine and Matthieu (Jalibert), we considered taking them out around the 50th minute. But it could have happened earlier in the meeting. There are always risks when we practice our sport. It’s like that.

How does the group react to their captain’s injury? We often talked about this beforehand. We prepared for it, we worked on it. A World Cup is very long and we knew that injuries could occur… As you can imagine, everyone is waiting, like every time a player is injured. We’ve already had it from the start. The group is very strong, very close. Every time one of its members is in difficulty, everyone has a hard time. Despite our very good match, the very good content, there is a bitter taste in the mouth with Antoine’s injury. But everyone is optimistic and hopes that Antoine will come back with us very quickly.

Your players have three days off. How can we prevent gloom from polluting them? The only thing we have going for us is time. We have two weeks before the next match. Our players will spend some time with their family and loved ones, it will do them good. And we will support them, as we have always done.