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Last Updated: Saturday, 17 March 2007, 17:17 GMT
Paris - 17 March, 2007
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Cedric Heymans and Pierre Mignoni celebrate the winning try
France were celebrating after their last-minute try in Paris

France (20) 46
Tries: Harinordoquy, Jauzion, Marty, Heymans, Milloud, Vermeulen
Con: Beauxis (5)
Pens: Beauxis (2)

Scotland (14) 19
Tries: Walker, Lamont, Murray
Cons: Paterson (2)

Elvis Vermeulen's last-gasp try clinched the Six Nations title for France despite a spirited Scottish challenge in Paris.

Scotland's bright start led to a Nikki Walker try, but Imanol Harinordoquy and Yannick Jauzion struck back for France.

Sean Lamont kept the Scots in touch with a try just before the break.

Tries by David Marty and Cedric Heymans put France in command but Euan Murray's score looked set to hand the title to Ireland before the dramatic finale.

France, Ireland and England were tied on six points each at the top of the Six Nations table before the final weekend, and the Irish kicked off with a 51-24 victory over Italy, meaning France needed to beat Scotland by at least 24 points.


Vermeulen's try in the dying seconds took the margin to 27 points and left England needing a massive win over Wales to deny France their fourth title in six years, but Brian Ashton's side lost 27-18 in Cardiff.

Scotland had taken the initiative from the kick-off and the normally clinical Chris Paterson missed a fairly straightforward penalty.

But when Dan Parks placed a clever cross-field kick to the far corner, Walker rose above Clement Poitrenaud to dive over the line for the opening try.

Paterson made no mistake this time with the conversion.

But the Scottish scrum was soon under pressure at the other end and Lionel Beauxis slotted over for France's first three points.

And, after a stirring break from Cedric Heymans, the French decision to run the ball was rewarded when Harinordoquy slid under the bodies on the try line.

Beauxis' simple conversion put the home side ahead for the first time.

The French were now inspired and a superb break by scrum-half Pierre Mignoni produced their second try after 33 minutes.

Nikki Walker gathers before scoring Scotland's opening try
Nikki Walker had given the Scots an early lead in Paris

A deceiving side-step, a quick dash, a deft chip over Paterson and a swift lay-off gave Jauzion the simple task of touching down under the posts.

Beauxis' conversion put France well on their way to the 24-point winning margin required.

Another French thrust towards the Scottish line gave Beauxis the chance to land another three points from under the posts.

These were worrying signs for Scotland, but Sean Lamont put them back in with a chance on the stroke of half-time.

The winger broke clear and, when Paterson was hauled down, Lamont's quick tap-and-go foxed the French defence and he touched down under the posts, Paterson adding the conversion.

Scotland started the second half well, but France were the more clinical going forward, Marty diving over in the corner and Beauxis converting from a difficult angle.

Just as Scotland started to apply some pressure of their own, a quick turnover led to a break that allowed Heymans to add another try in the same corner.

Sean Lamont was somehow sent to the sin-bin for what was deemed to be a late tackle that had actually been committed by his brother, Rory.

And the French immediately took advantage, with prop Milloud powering over the line by the pack for France's fifth try.

Scotland rejected a couple of opportunities to kick a simple penalty before Murray went over in the corner to hand the advantage in the Championship race back to Ireland.

But Paterson's conversion attempt struck the posts and, in a dramatic finish, Vermeulen hauled himself over the line.

The decision went to the video referee - Irishman Simon McDowell - and, after lengthy consideration, the try was awarded before Beauxis added the conversion.

France: Poitrenaud; Clerc, Marty, Jauzion, Heymans; Beauxis, Mignoni; Milloud, Ibanez, Villiers, Nallet, Thion, Betsen, Bonnaire, Harinordoquy.
Replacements: Bruno, Mas, Pape, Vermeulen, Elissalde, Traille, Dominici.

Scotland: Paterson; S Lamont, Dewey, Henderson, Walker; Parks, Lawson; Kerr, Ford, E Murray, Hines, S Murray, Taylor, J Beattie, Hogg.
Replacements: Hall, Jacobsen, Hamilton, Callam, Cusiter, Di Rollo, R Lamont.

How the Six Nations was decided
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05 Feb 07 |  Laws & Equipment
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England 26-18 France
11 Mar 07 |  Rugby Union
France 32-21 Wales
24 Feb 07 |  Welsh
Ireland 17-20 France
11 Feb 07 |  Rugby Union
Italy 3-39 France
03 Feb 07 |  Rugby Union
Scotland 18-19 Ireland
10 Mar 07 |  Rugby Union
Scotland 17-37 Italy
24 Feb 07 |  Scottish
Scotland 21-9 Wales
10 Feb 07 |  Rugby Union
England 42-20 Scotland
03 Feb 07 |  Rugby Union


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