Wales women will play a second senior international this autumn after it was announced they will travel to the Stade Albert Domec in Carcassonne to face France on Sunday 29 October (kick off 3pm, local time).
After winning the European Championship B last season, beating Italy and Ireland, Wales head coach Tom Brindle knows that this game will not only be a massive test, against one of the best teams in the world, but it’ll be a good marker for where the side is at ahead of their next match against England at Headingley a week later.
He said: “It’s a really important game for us for multiple reasons. We wanted to play games back-to-back so we can learn, do and review. Also the French are a great side, it’ll be our first historic test against them, and it’ll be a good chance to learn and develop as we go into our World Cup cycle hopefully next year.”
The squad news will follow soon but Brindle has confirmed: “There will be a handful of players from Cardiff Demons and the Women’s’ Super League teams gaining their debuts which is always a special moment for those players and families. It shows the increasing depth in our pathways.”
The Wales men’s side have played at Stade Albert Domec four times, the last being in 2018, but this is new ground for Wales Women, in their first-ever meeting with the French.
France have named an initial 26-woman squad, which includes Elisa Akpa who won a Women’s Super League title with York, and have been on camp in Nantes. As part of cancer screening awareness month, Pink October, entry to the match will be free for women.
France women’s head coach, Romain Maillot, commented: “I’m very happy to host Wales for the first time, it would be great to make it a permanent fixture in addition to England. They are an opponent we don’t know too much about but it’s going to be a real test for us. They have shown in their previous games a lot of aggression and self-sacrifice, with some good technical elements.”