MARCOUSSIS, France (AP) — Prop David Attoub has been surprisingly picked in France’s squad for its Six Nations opener against Italy next week.
Two years ago, Attoub was banned for more than a year for eye-gouging during a Heineken Cup match against Ulster. His only test appearance was six years ago against Romania.
Coach Philippe Saint-Andre also selected flyhalf Lionel Beauxis, loosehead prop Vincent Debaty, uncapped center Westley Fofana and uncapped lock Yoann Maestri in his 23-man squad.
France plays Italy next Saturday at Stade de France, and faces Ireland at home the following week.
Saint-Andre replaced Marc Lievremont, who led France to the World Cup final in which it lost 8-7 to New Zealand.
Copyright 2012 The Associated Press.