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France finishes perfect year beating Japan in Toulouse

France completed a calendar year of test rugby with a first perfect winning record after topping a competitive Japan 35-17 on Sunday.

November 21, 2022
21 November 2022

TOULOUSE, France (AP) — France completed a calendar year of test rugby with a first perfect winning record after topping a competitive Japan 35-17 on Sunday.

France’s 10th win in 10 tests and third defeat of Japan this year never looked in doubt after the opening minutes.

The Tricolores dominated up front and steadily built a 21-3 lead by halftime. Then the rain stopped, the play opened up, and Japan was more comfortable with a dry ball. Both sides added two tries each and both sides took a lap of honor in front of a packed crowd that savored the occasion at Stadium de Toulouse.

Victory also extended France’s year-long record winning streak to 13 tests, and it goes into the new year threatening the men’s world record of 18 straight wins.

The Japanese will return to Toulouse for the Rugby World Cup in less than months. The southwest city is their base and the stadium will host two of their games.

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