The former Manchester United double winner left his lunch plate and adopted his own fighting stance before saying: "No, I can't do it. Christophe, I'm standing by what I've said. There are no really good French boxers. And you aren't one of them."
Bouncing around, Dugarry threw some name at him. "No, Christophe," corrected Bruce, "no good French fighters. The French are good at cooking, martial arts, football, not boxing."
The trap was set.
Then came the challenge from the striker to name one Gallic exponent of any martial art. And a twinkle came into Bruce's eye.
"Eric Cantona," he said. And Dugarry laughed. As did the assembled audience. Classic Bruce.