France laboured to a 27-12 Pool A win against Uruguay at their home Rugby World Cup ©Getty Images

Hosts France were unconvincing in making it two wins from two at the men's Rugby World Cup by beating a spirited Uruguay side 27-12 in Lille.

France began their bid for a first title in fine fashion on Friday (September 8) with a 27-13 victory against three-time winners New Zealand at the Stade de France in Paris, and faced opponents ranked 17th in the world who had finished bottom of their group at the last two World Cups.

Uruguay's chances of taking something from their opener at this year's World Cup were widely dismissed, but they trailed just 13-12 when they found the first score of the second half.

France made 12 changes to their team from the New Zealand match and led through a Melvyn Jaminet penalty on three minutes, but the home crowd at the Stade Pierre-Mauroy were stunned when Nicolás Freitas scored the first try of the match to put Uruguay 5-3 in front.

Antoine Hastoy quickly replied with France's first try converted by Jaminet, and another penalty from full-back Jaminet on 14 minutes extended their lead to 13-5.

France were reduced to 14 players when Romain Taofifénua was sin-binned for catching Santiago Arata in the head, and Uruguay thought they had capitalised when Felipe Etcheverry crossed the whitewash, but it was ruled out by television match official Ben Whitehouse for a block by Tomás Inciarte.

Uruguay's pressure told in the second half when Baltazar Amaya scored their second try and Etcheverry converted to bring them within one point of their much-fancied opponents.

However, France were gifted a try when Etcheverry's clearance hit a team-mate and replacement hooker Peato Mauvaka capitalised.

Jaminet added the extras to put France 20-12 in front.

The hosts sealed the win on 74 minutes when 20-year-old World Cup debutant Louis Bielle-Biarrey added their third try which Jaminet converted to ensure they triumphed 27-12.

However, they were unable to add a bonus point with a fourth try.

France lead Pool A on eight points after two matches, followed by Italy on five after their 52-8 thrashing of Namibia.

The top two sides from each pool advance to the quarter-finals, while the third-placed teams join them in earning automatic places at the 2027 Rugby World Cup.

In tomorrow's only match, New Zealand are set to face Namibia in Toulouse in Pool A.