Planet Rugby

Bonus cruise for Stade Français

10th October 2009 15:30

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Julien Arias Stade francais Edinburgh

Julien Arias: Opened matters

Stade Français moved top of Pool Four after recording an impressive 31-7 bonus-point win over Edinburgh at Stade Jean Bouin on Saturday.

First-half tries from Julien Arias, Sergio Parisse, Pascal Pape and Lionel Beauxis ensured the maximum was secured before the half-hour.

Edinburgh hit back though in the second period and gained a late consolation score through improving outside centre Ben Cairns.

But the crushing loss was Edinburgh's 17th in their last 18 away outings in the Heineken Cup and consigned last season's victory at Castres to a distant memory.

Stade, who face the added pressure of being the host city for the 15th final next May, looked at ease as they flew out of the traps, but luck was on their side for the first try in the seventh minute.

Centre John Houston was turned over and, fortunately, right wing Arias picked up the scraps to launch a devastating counter-attack from inside his own half to beat Edinburgh fly-half Phil Godman on the outside and touch down with consummate ease.

Julien Dupuy, the scrum-half who returned to France in the summer from Leicester, added the extras and the hosts were up and running.

Stade were firmly into their stride two minutes later when they claimed their second score to stun the visitors.

Lock Tom Palmer won the line-out before fly-half Beauxis and Arias kept the move flowing to feed Italian number eight Sergio Parisse, who beat off the last-ditch tackle of Chris Paterson to crash over in the right corner.

Pape strolled through the challenge of Allan Jacobsen to add a third converted try by Dupuy for a comfortable 21-0 lead.

But the French outfit, who have never won Europe's biggest prize, did not take their foot off the accelerator in a thrilling opening half of slick passing, flair and adventure.

The bonus point came in the 29th minute when Beauxis finished off another fine flowing move to seal the home side's dominance and power to leave Edinburgh coach Rob Moffat with the daunting task of rallying his troops at the interval.

The visitors emerged for the second half with renowned vigour and aggression and competed well in their bid to halt the French rampage.

Stade head coach Jacques Delmas began to make sweeping changes with Dupuy, Antoine Burban and Sylvain Marconnet given the rest of the afternoon off.

With the number of changes, inevitably, the intensity dropped. Replacement scrum-half Noel Oelschig added a solitary penalty, but Edinburgh produced a spirited second-half display.

The away team were rewarded when Cairns combined with centre partner Nick de Luca to ensure Edinburgh were not whitewashed for only the fourth time in the Heineken Cup.

Then, in the final minute, Cairns nearly turned provider for Scott MacLeod but his right boot caught the touchline.

Edinburgh now must beat Ulster at home next weekend to get their campaign on track. Stade, who moved above the Irish side to top the pool, travel to Bath next Sunday.

The scorers:

For Stade Français:
Tries: Arias, Parisse, Palmer, Beauxis
Con: Dupuy 3, Beauxis
Pen: Oelschig

For Edinburgh:
Tries: Cairns
Con:Godman

Stade Français: 15 Hugo Southwell, 14 Julien Arias, 13 Guillaume Bousses, 12 Geoffroy Messina, 11 Mark Gasnier, 10 Lionel Beauxis, 9 Julien Dupuy, 8 Sergio Parisse, 7 Antoine Burban, 6 James Haskell, 5 Pascal Pape, 4 Tom Palmer, 3 Sylvain Marconnet, 2 Dimitri Szarzewski, 1 Rodrigo Roncero.
Replacements: 16 Mathieu Blin, 17 Damien Weber, 18 David Attoub, 19 Arnaud Marchois, 20 Benjamin Kayser, 21 Noel Oelschig, 22 Mirco Bergamasco, 23 Ollie Phillips.

Edinburgh: 15 Chris Paterson, 14 Mark Robertson, 13 Ben Cairns, 12 John Houston, 11 Tim Visser, 10 Phil Godman, 9 Mike Blair, 8 Allister Hogg, 7 Roddy Grant, 6 Alan MacDonald, 5 Scott MacLeod, 4 Jim Hamilton, 3 Geoff Cross, 2 Ross Ford, 1 Allan Jacobsen.
Replacements: 16 Andrew Kelly, 17 Kyle Traynor, 18 Ryan Grant, 19 Steve Turnbull, 20 Scott Newlands, 21 Greig Laidlaw, 22 Nick De Luca, 23 Steve Jones.

Referee: Nigel Owens (Wales)
Assistant referees: David Bodily (Wales), Hugh Watkins (Wales)
Television match official: Derek Bevan (Wales)

  • Rugby Champions Cup Fixtures
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Pool 1
European Rugby Champions Cup Table
PosTeamPPts
1Leinster622
2Northampton617
3Castres69
4Ospreys65
Pool 2
European Rugby Champions Cup Table
PosTeamPPts
1Toulon624
2Cardiff Blues614
3Exeter612
4Glasgow Warriors611
Pool 3
European Rugby Champions Cup Table
PosTeamPPts
1Toulouse623
2Saracens620
3Connacht613
4Zebre60
Pool 4
European Rugby Champions Cup Table
PosTeamPPts
1Clermont Auvergne624
2Harlequins616
3Scarlets611
4Racing Metro Paris67
Pool 5
European Rugby Champions Cup Table
PosTeamPPts
1Ulster626
2Leicester Tigers621
3Montpellier611
4Treviso60
Pool 6
European Rugby Champions Cup Table
PosTeamPPts
1Munster623
2Gloucester614
3Edinburgh612
4Perpignan67