French halfback Morgan Parra is being sized up to start against the Wallabies at five-eighth – his first game there since the 2011 World Cup final.
The Wallabies aren’t the only team with a playmaking dilemma ahead of next week’s first Test with France poised to move halfback Morgan Parra to No.10.
Parra hasn’t played five-eighth since the 2011 World Cup final but is the favourite for the key role with Les Bleus’ two specialist No.10s not due to arrive until Tuesday – four days before the series-opener at Suncorp Stadium.
The talented No.9 trained with intent at five-eighth in an otherwise full-strength 15 in France’s first session in Australia at Brisbane’s Anglican Church Grammar School on Friday.
While Australia coach Ewen McKenzie has a tough choice to decide between Kurtley Beale and Bernard Foley, French counterpart Phillipe Saint-Andre can’t prepare his side with Remi Tales and Frederic Michalak until late in the week.
Tales is playing for Castres in this weekend’s French 14 final against Michalak’s Toulon.
Although veteran Michalak has been left out of the European Cup champions’ line-up, with Jonny Wilkinson starting at five-eighth in his swansong, he’s been required to stay in France with his club.
The only other first-choice player missing from the start of Les Bleus preparations is giant centre Mathieu Bastareaud who will also arrive with a seven-strong party of latecomers.