Alexis Bourdon / Photo credits: Victor Joly / DPPI via AFP 11:54 a.m., October 15, 2023

A few hours before the kick-off of the quarter-final France-South Africa, Toulouse fans are eager to see Antoine Dupont on the pitch. Despite the joy of seeing the captain of Les Bleus play again, everyone is aware that this match could be very complicated.

New Zealand and Argentina booked their place in the semi-finals of the Rugby World Cup on Saturday. This Sunday evening at 21 pm, the XV of France will try to do the same, but will have to face before that a major opponent: South Africa, reigning world champion. Although wary, French fans are reassured by the return of Antoine Dupont, especially to Toulouse, in the stronghold of the captain of the France team.

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This is the main topic of conversation in the biggest fan zone of France: the return from injury of the local hero, Antoine Dupont. His presence at the kick-off of the match was eagerly awaited by Nathan, a Toulouse supporter. "The team with Antoine or without Antoine is indeed not the same. I'm really happy that he's coming back for this quarter-final and can't wait to see the game," he smiled.

"Fingers crossed"

Despite the captain of Les Bleus in the starting line-up, Toulouse fans prefer to remain cautious. For them, it's likely to be a hard-fought game. "It's South Africa in front so we hope to win, we are fully behind the France team but it will be a very tough match and we will have to be serious until the end," said one supporter. "They're still a big team, we've already beaten them so we're hoping, we're keeping our fingers crossed," added another.

Antoine Dupont is expected to play this Sunday evening with a helmet on his head. A precaution to protect himself from blows but which should not hinder his vision of the game, assured the French master of play.