Paris – France coach on Monday named Montpellier flyhalf Francois Trinh-Duc and seven uncapped players in an initial 17-strong squad for the two-Test tour of Argentina this month.
Trinh-Duc, who will move to Toulon next season, has been told he does not feature in Montpellier coach Jake White’s Top 14 play-off plans, freeing up the playmaker for the June 19 and 25 internationals in Tucuman.
There will likely be a raft of players missing from the Tests given that the Top 14 semi-finals involving automatic qualifiers Clermont and Toulon are slated for June 19-20 and the final for June 24.
Noves will add 11 more players after the Top 14 quarter-finals between Montpellier-Castres and Racing 92-Toulouse next weekend, the rugby federation said in a statement.
Noves took advantage of the scheduling snag to unveil seven uncapped players in his initial squad: No 8 Kevin Gourdon, scrumhalf Baptiste Serin, hooker Remi Bonfils, locks William Demotte and Julien Ledevedec, centre Julien Rey and winger Xavier Mignot.
Provisional France squad for Argentina tour
Forwards: Uini Atonio (La Rochelle), Jefferson Poirot (Bordeaux-Begles), Rabah Slimani (Stade Francais), Remi Bonfils (Stade Francais), William Demotte (Agen), Julien Ledevedec (Bordeaux-Begles), Loann Goujon (Bordeaux-Begles), Kevin Gourdon (La Rochelle), Raphael Lakafia (Stade Francais)
Backs: Baptiste Serin (Bordeaux-Begles), Jules Plisson (Stade Francais), Francois Trinh-Duc (Montpellier), Jonathan Danty (Stade Francais), Julien Rey (Bordeaux-Begles), Djibril Camara (Stade Francais), Xavier Mignot (Grenoble), Hugo Bonneval (Stade Francais)