France's captain Thierry Dusautoir. Photo: AFP
France captain Thierry Dusautoir has been ruled out of the November internationals with a knee injury, the team announced on Tuesday.
Dusautoir's place in the initial 33-man squad will be taken by Toulouse teammate Yannick Nyanga, who won the last of his 25 caps in the third-place play-off against Argentina in the 2007 World Cup.
Dusautoir, capped 54 times for France, twisted his knee in a tackle in Toulouse's 33-21 victory over Treviso in European Cup action on Saturday.
France coach Philippe Saint-Andre confirmed Dusautoir would be out for four to six weeks, the same prognosis offered on Sunday by Toulouse coach Guy Noves, who described the injury as a "twisted internal lateral ligament with a slight tear".
"We're really disappointed at Thierry's withdrawal, he's one of the senior players we left at home to rest up during the summer tour to Argentina and we were hoping to find him fresh and raring to go for the November series," said Saint-Andre.
"As captain, it's good that he keeps contact with the France squad. It's why we invited him to the training camp" between November 2-4.
As expected, Stade Francais lock Pascal Pape takes over the captaincy for Les Bleus' autumn international series which kicks off against Australia on November 10, before matches against Argentina and Samoa on the following weekends.