Saturday, 6 October 2007
Allez les Bleus!!
We were out on the town exploring Nuit Blanche, when I remembered that the deciding match between New Zealand and France was on. I made haste with Sean to Hotel de Ville to join the tens of thousands of people watchcing the game on a huge screen in front of city hall complete with astroturf.
As we approached, shouting and cheering from the streets greeted us. I love the excitement of people gathered and cheering on "the team". We hopped up on some sculpture to get a good shot of the crowd. The crowd was so thick, it was hard to move. The entire place was packed, including all the surrounding streets. More shouting and then flares and smoke began to appear.
We found a better place with a good view, but there was a youth in the crowd shouting "All Blacks!" in favor of New Zealand. As close at the game was, we were afraid a fight might break out around this guy. Me moved on.
We finally found a post near the edge of the crowd, where we could see the screen and watch people pulling each other up on the newstand to get a better view. Yikes. It was crowded up there.
The score was 13 to 13 for a while when one of Les Bleus busted out and made a "touchdown". (I'll try to add our vidoe of this soon.) The crowd went wild. The score went back and forth for the last 10 minutes of the game. It was thrilling. The crowd was shouting "Allez les Bleus!" The young man in front of me kept answering my pesky questions about the score and minutes remaining.
I was excited for France. They were definitely the underdogs in weight and were expected to lose. The All BLacks were a shoe in for the victory.
But not tonight. France leaps to a 28-18 victory, and can now continue the fight for the World Rugby Cup. Even if they don't get the cup, they certainly took down the giants tonight.