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France 16:45 Fiji

Six Nations: France captain Pascal Pape a doubt for Sunday's game with Italy

Last Updated: 05/02/14 7:00pm

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Pascal Pape: Withdrew from training on Wednesday

Pascal Pape: Withdrew from training on Wednesday

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France skipper Pascal Pape is a doubt for Sunday's Six Nations home game with Italy after he was forced out of training on Wednesday.

The Stade Francais second row didn't appear to be injured when he left the session, but he had not fully recovered from Les Bleus' stunning 26-24 victory over England last weekend.

As a precaution, France coach Philippe Saint-Andre has retained four locks in his initial 25-man squad for the home clash with the Azzurri.

Pape has endured an injury-disrupted career and missed four of France's Six Nations game last year with a back problem.

Saint-Andre also released five players back to their clubs including wing Maxime Medard, who played the entire match against England.

Back-row forward Virgile Bruni, centre Maxime Mermoz and wings Geoffrey Palis and Marc Andreu have also been released to play in this weekend's Top 14 fixtures.

Saint-Andre will announce his starting line-up on Friday morning.

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