I hope he breaks my try scoring record, he says

PARIS - Legendary All Black Jonah Lomu has backed flying South Africa winger Bryan Habana to break his record for tries scored at a World Cup at Saturday's final.

PARIS - Legendary All Black Jonah Lomu has backed flying South Africa winger Bryan Habana to break his record for tries scored at a World Cup at Saturday's final.

Habana has already equalled Lomu's 1999 record of eight tries, having scored two against Argentina in the 37-13 semifinal win as well as four against Samoa and two in the victory over the US in the pool stages.

"The sky's the limit for him," Lomu told the BBC. "When he got to the eight the other day I was the first to stand up and applaud. He's a great ambassador for South Africa and a great ambassador for the sport.

"I'm hoping he will break it on Saturday because records are there to be broken. If you're defending against him you've got to shut his space down quickly. If he gets it in a dangerous area, nine times out of 10 he will score."

Lomu, who played in the All Blacks' 1995 team that reached the final only to lose to the Springboks, also said he was not surprised that England had recovered from a 36-0 defeat by South Africa in the pool to reach the final.

"If England turn up with the forwards playing as well as they can they are tough," Lomu said. "Ugly rugby can win you rugby matches."

Meanwhile, France flyhalf Frederic Michalak expressed frustration on Wednesday over coach Bernard Laporte's tactics in their World Cup semifinal defeat by England where the hosts looked a shadow of their flamboyant selves.

"We were given instructions and we had to follow them," said Michalak, who came on as a substitute in Saturday's 14-9 loss to the holders.

Instead of picking Michalak, a symbol of French flair, Laporte chose Lionel Beauxis to start the match at number 10 because he is a powerful kicker. - Sapa-AFP

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