Planet Rugby

Champions Toulon back on track

13th January 2014 07:42


mourad boudjellal toulon

Relief: Mourad Boudjellal

Mourad Boudjellal and Mathieu Bastareaud both expressed Toulon's relief at ending a rough patch by beating Cardiff Blues in Nice.

A loss the previous weekend against Grenoble had lead to speculation that coach Bernard Laporte may quit the club.

However Saturday's win means, in Europe at least, Toulon are on track having qualified for the knockout stages due to being seven points clear at the top of Pool 2 with one game to go.

"Some strange things happen in rugby," Boudjellal told the ERC website.

"At half-time, we thought we might lose the game and that we could be eliminated. But then everything turns around in three minutes.

"I'm very happy but it's been a very tough season. I don't know what's going to happen and if things will be sorted out it, but I do know that it's a very hard season for us."

France international centre Bastareaud backed his owner's comments, who credited the Toulon pack for an excellent performance as they forced three penalty tries out of the Blues.

"It has been a difficult week but it may have been that a bad situation led to a good one. We managed to keep focused on ourselves and we wanted to end the week with a great game," said Bastareaud.

"We have to praise the performance of our forwards, they really stood up. For us backs, it was easy to play behind their work.

"We lacked trust during the first half but a positive speech from Bernard Laporte kept us on track. We told each other what had to be said in the week, and some of those words hurt. But it's what we needed to do. That's what happens in the life of a club.

"We still can aim towards big things. Now, we have to focus on Glasgow and make sure we get a win there next week.''

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