Thomas Bosc and Jerome Guisset guided France to a controversial 36-18 World Cup victory over Scotland in Canberra on Sunday.
Catalans Dragons stand-off Bosc produced an influential display by kicking six goals from as many attempts, and creating two French tries.
Captain and fellow Dragons star Guisset also helped himself to a brace of tries, but defeat was tough on the gutsy Scots.
They were aggrieved by two tries disallowed by Australian video referee Phil Cooley, and also felt play should have been stopped in the build-up to John Wilson's first-half try for France, as Duncan MacGillivray was down concussed in back play.
Steve McCormack's team are now considerable outsiders to make the semi-final qualifier with just one Pool Two game remaining, against Fiji on November 5.
France had led 18-6 at half-time, with the disputed Wilson try helping establish control for John Monie's side.
Scotland were down to 12 men at the time with second rower MacGillivray lying motionless, but New Zealand referee Leon Williamson allowed the French to continue.
On the last tackle of the set, Bosc's high kick saw Wilson out-jump the defence to touch down, with the Scots still protesting.
With six minutes remaining the French sealed victory as Guisset legitimately stole the ball from Robertson to grab his second try.
Christophe Moly's try in the final seconds gave a lopsided look to the scoreline in what was a generally tight contest.