Machete attack on France trio Rougerie, Pierre and Kayser

Rougerie, pictured, and Pierre played in the 2011 Rugby World Cup final defeat by New Zealand

Three France internationals have been taken to hospital after an attack by a gang armed with machetes and swords.

Clermont Auvergne's Aurelien Rougerie, Julien Pierre and Benjamin Kayser were assaulted in Millau, southern France, at around 03:00 local time on Sunday.

Pierre - who along with Rougerie was part of the France team that lost the 2011 Rugby World Cup final - will have surgery on "deep cuts" to his hip.

A club statement said none of the injuries was life-threatening.

Clermont's 33-year-old captain Rougerie, capped 77 times by his country, and Kayser have injuries to their arms from the attack in Millau, where the players were staying before heading to a club training camp.

Police said the trio had been to a nightclub. No-one was detained at the scene.

"A group of players were assaulted by a dozen people carrying weapons including machetes, knives, swords," Clermont said in a statement.

"We are deeply shocked and outraged by these acts and will bring all the necessary support to local authorities who have launched a probe."

Kayser, 29, has played 24 times for France and Pierre, 33, has 27 caps.

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