France stars kept awake by rowdy wedding party at Croydon hotel in blow to …

  • France begin their Rugby World Cup campaign against Italy on Saturday
  • Les Bleus were kept away by a noisy wedding party at their London hotel
  • Prop Uini Atonio complained ‘We might have to change hotel!’
  • Captain Thierry Dusautoir has played down fears over his injured hand

By Nick Purewal, Press Association1

Published: 11:19 GMT, 14 September 2015 | Updated: 11:41 GMT, 14 September 2015

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France’s World Cup preparations hit an unlikely speed bump in the shape of a Croydon wedding party. Giant prop Uini Atonio has revealed how a rowdy set of wedding guests spoiled his first night’s sleep in France’s south London hotel. World Cup history is full of tall tales of demented fans attempting to ruin rivals’ preparations by spoiling sleep patterns, and Atonio’s wedding blues only add to that tradition.

France Stars Kept Awake By Rowdy Wedding Party At Croydon Hotel In Blow To ...

France prop Uini Atonio has complained after being kept awake by a wedding party at their hotel

France Stars Kept Awake By Rowdy Wedding Party At Croydon Hotel In Blow To ...

The French squad are staying at Selsdon Park Hotel & Golf Club in Croydon

France Stars Kept Awake By Rowdy Wedding Party At Croydon Hotel In Blow To ...

Players arrived at their base for the 2015 Rugby World Cup on Saturday before a sleepless night

France Stars Kept Awake By Rowdy Wedding Party At Croydon Hotel In Blow To ...

France’s captain Thierry Dusautoir looks from a window from the team’s hotel in south London

France Stars Kept Awake By Rowdy Wedding Party At Croydon Hotel In Blow To ...

France Rugby World Cup players arrive for a training session at the Trinity School in Croydon

‘I did not really sleep well,’ said Atonio of Saturday night.

‘There was a wedding in the reception area just under my room, and they were quite noisy.

‘At around two in the morning, when I still could not sleep, I had to put my headphones on.

‘We might have to change hotel!’

Les Bleus will open their Pool D campaign by facing Italy at Twickenham on Saturday night. Philippe Saint-Andre’s men will be favourites to see off the Azzurri, who will be without talisman and captain Sergio Parisse.

France Stars Kept Awake By Rowdy Wedding Party At Croydon Hotel In Blow To ...

France will be without talisman Sergio Parisse (centre) who has struggled to recover from injury

France Stars Kept Awake By Rowdy Wedding Party At Croydon Hotel In Blow To ...

Les Bleus have been draw in a World Cup pool including Italy, Canada, Romania and Ireland

France Stars Kept Awake By Rowdy Wedding Party At Croydon Hotel In Blow To ...

France’s center Wesley Fofana takes part in a training session ahead of Saturday’s opener

FRANCE WORLD CUP FIXTURES

Sept 19 vs Italy at Twickenham

Sept 23 vs Romania at Olympic Stadium

Oct 1 vs Canada at Stadiummk

Oct11 vs Ireland at Millennium Stadium

The Stade Francais No 8 has failed to recover in time after having a haematoma on his left calf drained. France will be expected to battle it out with double RBS 6 Nations champions Ireland for top spot in Pool D, so will be seeking a fast start against the Italians.

Canada and Romania will be hard-pressed to keep pace with the other contenders in the pool.

France captain Thierry Dusautoir allayed any fears surrounding his bandaged left hand, the 33-year-old itching to get into action.

‘It’s only a bump, no broken bones,’ said the back-row forward.

France Stars Kept Awake By Rowdy Wedding Party At Croydon Hotel In Blow To ...

Captain Dusautoir, sitting beside coach Philippe Saint Andre, has played down fears over his hand injury

Head coach Saint-Andre laughed off the minor complaint, jokingly saying: ‘He only broke a nail!’

As France launch their final preparations having settled into their London base, loose forward Damien Chouly called for a quick rise in intensity and focus.

‘If we want to be at full potential on Saturday, we have to keep our energy,’ said Chouly.

‘But after two days of rest, we are happy to get on the field and get the machine going.’

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References

  1. ^ Nick Purewal, Press Association (www.dailymail.co.uk)

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