Planet Rugby

Classy Clermont see off Toulouse

31st August 2013 15:58

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Clermont centre Wesley Fofana C scores v Toulouse

Late try for Clermont: Wesley Fofana

Clermont were made to work very hard for a 38-19 home win over Top 14 rivals Toulouse at Parc des Sports Marcel Michelin on Saturday.

Clermont led 13-10 at break and the teams were separated by a single point going into the final 15 minutes but late tries from flank Julien Bonnaire and centre Wesley Fofana ensured that les Jaunards maintained their three-year unbeaten record on home soil - a run of 61 consecutive matches.

In a perfect response to last week's humbling defeat to newcomers Oyonnax, Clermont outscored Toulouse by four tries to one with the 19-times champions looking decidedly frail up front after a series of injuires decimated their ranks.

Australian fly-half Brock James opened the scoring in the 16th minute but his opposite number Lionel Beauxis responded almost immediately after Yannick Nyanga won a penalty at the restart.

Toulouse centre Yann David was hauled down after a 60-metre interception with Clermont flanker Julien Bardy being yellow carded for a ruck infringement.

Beauxis sent his penalty effort wide though before Toulouse tighthead prop Yohan Montes was also sent to the bin for collapsing the scrum.

Toulouse would move in front however as Beauxis made amends with a deft grubber kick collected by Maxime Medard for an easy try under the posts.

A second James penalty kept Clermont in touch at 10-6 and before Bardy restored the hosts lead after combining well with Fofana.

A Sitiveni Sivivatu break almost saw fellow Clermont winger Napolioni Nalaga cross in the corner and half-time couldn't come quick enough for a beleaguered Toulouse.

Beauxis pulled the scores level with an early second-half penalty, however, as Bardy was denied by a great tackle by Medard at the other end.

Clermont's veteran lock Nathan Hines won the resulting line-out, the ball falling kindly for Thomas Domingo to cross in the corner, James on target with the conversion.

Beauxis pulled back two smart penalties to peg the home side's lead back to a single point but James hit one of his own and then a drop-goal to calm nerves with Toulouse's depleted pack under increasing pressure.

Bonnaire and Fofana put the icing on the Clermont cake when they were both on hand to finish off sweeping cross-field moves and help ensure their team's formidable home record continued unabated.

The scorers:

For Clermont:
Tries: Bardy, Domingo, Bonnaire, Fofana
Cons: James 3
Pens: James 3
Drop: James
Yellow card: Bardy

For Toulouse:
Tries: Medard
Cons: Beauxis
Pens: Beauxis 4
Yellow card: Montes

Clermont: 15 Lee Byrne, 14 Sitiveni Sivivatu, 13 Benson Stanley 12 Wesley Fofana, 11 Naipolioni Nalaga, 10 Brock James, 9 Ludovic Radosavljevic, 8 Damien Chouly, 7 Julien Bardy, 6 Julien Bonnaire, 5 Nathan Hines, 4 Julien Pierre, 3 Daniel Kotze, 2 Benjamin Kayser, 1 Thomas Doming


Replacements: 16 Tii Paulo, 17 Raphael Chaume, 18 Loic Jacquet, 19 Gerhard Vosloo, 20 Thierry Lacrampe, 21 Gavin Hume, 22 Jean Marcellin Buttin, 23 Clement Ric.

Toulouse: 15 Clement Poitrenaud, 14 Maxime Medard, 13 Yann David, 12 Gael Fickou, 11 Yves Donguy, 10 Lionel Beauxis, 9 Jano Vermaak, 8 Iosefa Tekori, 7 Yannick Nyanga, 6 Yacouba Camara, 5 Yoann Maestri, 4 Gregory Lamboley, 3 Yohan Montes, 2 Christopher Tolofua, 1 Gurthro Steenkamp.
Replacements: 16 Kevin Firmin, 17 Cyril Baille, 18 Romain Millo Chlusky, 19 Gillian Galan, 20 Sebastien Bezy, 21 Jean Pascal Barraque, 22 Timoci Matanavou, 23 Census Johnston.

Referee: A. Ruiz

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