Saturday against Castres (14-10 victory), USAP could count on Will Witty for the first time this season. And the English second line had a game full of promise.
A successful first. This is how we can qualify the performance of Will Witty on Saturday against Castres (14-10 victory). Aligned for the first time in the Top 14 with the USAP, the English second line seduced and brought what the staff expected of him. “Will is used to the top level, even the very top level with Exeterrecalls the head coach, David Marty. What he showed is interesting, very interesting. It brings us a big added value in everything. In the intensity, the fight. He is a complete player with a remarkable state of mind.” First rookie aligned, at Aimé-Giral, in a starting XV this season in the Top 14, the defector from the Exeter Chiefs brought a breath of fresh air to the Catalan pack.
Labouteley-Witty, a hitch to review
Like a good self-respecting English forward, Will Witty does not shy away from the task when it comes to facing the opponent. To martyr him. The most active player in the front five with 7 balls played, the native of Malton (North Yorkshire, England) was at the forefront of the fight. The promises of his good friendly match against Racing 92 on August 19 have been confirmed. And Aimé-Giral saw it. Replaced at 48e minute, chewed, Witty was treated to a real cheer from the stadium. Public of connoisseurs, who knows how to recognize a good soldier. The former Newcastle player then returned to the 65e minute in place of Lucas Bachelier, also blunt. This allowed the USAP to field a second line Tristan Labouteley-Will Witty. The kings of the air. A hitch that could be very promising for the future. Indeed, against Castres, Witty offered real comfort for Usapist hookers. Of 15 throws – all successful, for the first time this season – 8 were in the direction of the Briton. The first try also arrived after a good take on his part in touch, resulting from a possession which went to the end by Afusipa Taumoepeau (39e). For his part, Tristan Labouteley, entered at 53e minute, stole a precious ball into touch 5 meters from the in-goal. And he finished best tackler of the match, with a nice 10/10, when USAP was on the back foot.
With Will Witty, Tristan Labouteley, Piula Faasalele, a Shahn Eru who seems to be back in shape, without forgetting Andrei Mahu and Victor Moreaux, the Catalan staff will be able to count on a competitive second line every weekend. Knowing that Faasalele and Eru can go down a notch in order to densify the third line. The latter, still orphaned by Galletier, Mamea Lemalu, Oviedo and Ugena, has also found her balance with a Lucas Velarte, in 8, in all good shots. The Catalan remains in line with his first two matches in this position, he the usual hooker.
With a lot of certainty, two consecutive successes and the expected returns of Fia, Moreaux, Galletier, McIntyre, Wiliame, even Mamea Lemalu, for the trip to the Stade Français (Saturday 5 p.m.), USAP can begin its new week of training in complete serenity. Far from the fear that twisted his stomach two weeks ago before receiving Toulon.