Brive were the big winners on Saturday, snatching a late victory against Stade FranÃ§ais while Toulon smashed Agen and Biarritz edged Toulouse.
Brive were the big winners in France on Saturday, coming from behind to snatch victory against Stade FranÃ§ais while Toulon smashed Agen and Biarritz edged Toulouse.
Stade FranÃ§ais threw away a fifteen-point lead at home in Paris as a late Ronny Cooke try sealed an unlikely win for Brive.
Biarritz were outscored two tries to one by Toulouse, but Dimitri Yachvili was in scintillating form with the boot and kicked the Basques to victory.
Jonny Wilkinson scored two of Toulon's six tries as they finally got a win at home.
Perpignan struggled once again but did enough to get past basement-locked Bourgoin.
Elsewhere, Montpellier continued their strong start to the season with a solid win at home to Castres while Racing-MÃ©tro had too much firepower for fourteen-man La Rochelle.
Bayonne 18-16 Clermont
Montpellier 23-12 Castres
Toulon 41-10 Agen
Perpignan 27-20 Bourgoin
Racing-MÃ©tro 43-18 La Rochelle
Stade FranÃ§ais 27-29 Brive
Biarritz 25-20 Toulouse
Montpellier HR 23-12 Castres Olympique
Stade Yves Du Manoir, Montpellier
A third straight home win for Montpellier sees them claim a place amongst the leading quartet thanks largely to a very well-organised defence.
Despite Castres dominating most of the first half, Montpellier had their noses in front at the break after Georgian lock Mamuka Gorgodze touched down in a pile of bodies a few minutes before the hooter.
Trailing 13-9 at half-time and short a man after hooker Mathieu Bonello saw yellow, Castres went further behind when Montpellier's Argentine wing Martin Moyano added his second penalty.
The hosts broke clear at the start of the final quarter when FranÃ§ois Trinh-Duc put centre Geoffrey Doumayrou clear to score. Faced with an impenetrable defensive wall, Castres were unable to add to Romain Tuelet's early penalties.
RC Toulon 41-10 SU Agen
Stade Felix Mayol, Toulon
At last, Toulon score a few tries! Les Varois finally clicked as they wracked up six tries while Jonny Wilkinson contributed 21 points.
It was one way traffic in the first half as Toulon ran in four unanswered tries to lead 29-3 at the break. Wilkinson scored the first and the fourth with loose forwards Dewald Senekal (formally of the Lions) and Juan Fernandez Lobbe also getting their names on the scoreboard.
Agen fought back with a try for full-back Florent Cazeaux soon after the restart but Toulon wing Rudi Wulf took a fantastic pass from centre Geoffrey Messina to score RCT's fifth try in the 60th minute.
A late penalty try sealed a dominant performance from les Toulonais
USA Perpignan 27-20 CS Bourgoin-Jallieu
Stade AimÃ© Giral, Perpignan
Perpignan were made to work hard for their four points. Once again the Catalan pack had to come to the rescue.
A losing bonus point for Bourgoin will go some way to easy their frustrations.
Perpignan controlled most of the first half but were trailing 10-9 when the teams swapped ends after young Bourgoin centre Alexandre Dumoulin bust through the Catalan defence to score on the stroke of half time.
The hosts moved back in front in the 58th minute however thanks to an enormous effort from their pack. Prop Nicolas Mas off-loaded to wing Farid Sid, who touched down before Jerome Porical added the conversion and his second penalty. (19-10)
Perpignan thought they had done enough when Porical broke through and put Sid away for his second try but Bourgoin replied almost immediately when Tulou scored.
Porical's fourth penalty in the 79th minute secure victory for Perpignan.
Racing-MÃ©tro 43-18 Stade Rochelais Atlantique
Stade Yves Du Manoir – Colombes (Paris)
Racing grabbed their first offensive bonus point of the season just three minutes from time once La Rochelle had been reduced to thirteen men!
La Rochelle put up a good fight and were hanging on until full-back Benjamin Dambielle was shown a red card for a horrible high tackle in the 33rd minute.
A man down, the visitors couldn't stop Italian wing Mirco Bergamasco scoring just before the break to add to Fijian Sireli Bobo's early touchdown to give Racing a 18-6 lead at half time.
La Rochelle did well to sneak a try at the start of the second half through wing Florian Ninard.
With Juan Martin Hernandez off injured, Jonathan Wisniewski came on to take over the kicking duties and added two more penalties to give Racing a healthy lead.
But the Les Maritimes weren't ready to rollover and Norman Ligairi's try in the 64th minute set up a tight finish.
Racing's Argentine loose forward Alvaro Galindo crashed over with ten minutes to play before the wheels finally came off the Rochelais bus.
Ninard was sent to the bin for an intentional knock down. Two men down, La Rochelle finally conceded the bonus point when South African lock Francois Van der Merwe barged over at the death.
Stade FranÃ§ais Paris 27-29 CA Brive CorrÃ¨ze
Stade CharlÃ©ty, Paris
What a comeback by Brive! 27-12 down with half an hour to play, les CorrÃ©ziens score two tries in the final quarter to snatch victory.
At the end of an action-packed first half, Stade FranÃ§ais were up 17-12 thanks to tries from English wing Ollie Phillips and skipper Sergio Parisse. Brive would have regretted a couple of missed opportunities and only had four penalties from Mathieu BÃ©lie to show for their efforts.
The Parisians extended the gap soon after the break when Argentine full-back Martin Rodriguez Gurruchaga converted his own try. Lionel Beauxis' second penalty gave the hosts a 27-12 lead.
Brive continued to play positive rugby and were given reason to hope when South African number eight Antonie Claasen finished after a clever kick ahead by Luciano Orquera.
A penalty from replacement wing Julien Caminati put the visitors back in contention with five minutes to play before Orquera countered Phillips and put wing Ronny Cooke away to score from long distance to level the scores.
With three minutes to play, BÃ©lie's conversion sealed the win!
Biarritz Olympique v Stade Toulousain
Parc des Sports d'Aguilera, Biarritz
What would Biarritz do with out Dimitri Yachvili? The little scrum-half kicked six penalties and a conversion to steer his side to a vital victory. Toulouse will have to settle for a losing bonus