January 17, 2018 / 4:13 PM / a month ago

UPDATE 1-Rugby-Bastareaud replaced by Danty in France Six Nations squad, Parra recalled

(adds Bastareaud-Danty details)

Jan 17 (Reuters) - France have replaced centre Mathieu Bastareaud with Jonathan Danty in head coach Jacques Brunel’s 32-man Six Nations squad, following the Toulon player’s three week ban for using homophobic language.

Scrumhalf Morgan Parra has been recalled to the side, with six uncapped players also named for the tournament which starts next month.

Parra, 29, last played for his country in October 2015 and did not feature under former France coach Guy Noves, who was sacked in December following a poor run of results.

Bastareaud was initially included in the squad but the 29-year-old has been banned for three weeks by European Professional Club Rugby (EPCR) for using homophobic language during his club’s European Champions Cup win over Italy’s Benetton Treviso.

Bastareaud was cited for a comment made to Benetton flanker Sebastian Negri Da Oleggio and apologised on social media. The Frenchman was found guilty by an independent disciplinary panel and has the right to appeal the decision.

Stade Francais centre Danty, who has four caps for France, has been called up to replace Bastareaud, who can return to action on Feb. 4.

Bordeaux flyhalf Matthieu Jalibert received his first call-up while uncapped Danny Priso, Cedate Gomes Sa, Felix Lambey, Marco Tauleign and Geoffrey Palis were also chosen.

Along with Bastareaud, veterans Francois Trinh-Duc and Louis Picamoles are the other most notable absentees in Brunel’s squad.

France start their Six Nations campaign against Ireland at home on Feb. 3 with the competition ending on March 17.

Squad:

Backs

Anthony Jelonch (Castres), Felix Lambey (LOU), Remi Lamerat (Clermont), Wenceslas Lauret (Racing 92), Sekou Macalou (French Stage), Maxime Machenaud (Racing 92), Geoffrey Palis (Castres), Morgan Parra (Clermont), Jefferson Poirot (UBB), Dany Priso (La Rochelle), Rabah Slimani (Clermont), Marco Tauleigne (UBB), Teddy Thomas (Racing 92), Cristopher Tolofua (Saracens), Sebastien Vahaamahina (Clermont), Virimi Vakatawa (Racing 92)

Forwards

Jonathan Danty (Stade Français Paris), Anthony Belleau (Toulon), Eddy Ben Arous (Racing 92), Yacouba Camara (Montpellier), Camille Chat (Racing 92), Henry Chavancy (Racing 92), Geoffrey Doumayrou (La Rochelle), Brice Dulin ( Racing 92), Antoine Dupont (Toulouse), Benjamin Fall (Montpellier), Paul Gabrillagues (Stade Français), Cedate Gomes Sa (Racing 92), Kevin Gourdon (La Rochelle), Guilhem Guirado (Toulon), Arthur Iturria (Clermont), Matthieu Jalibert (UBB) (Reporting by Aditi Prakash in Bengaluru; Editing by Ken Ferris and Christian Radnedge)

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