Planet Rugby

Top 14 Wrap: Toulon go top

17th April 2010 15:53

Share:

Tana Umaga v Perpignan 2010

Evergreen Tana Umaga was on the wing for Toulon

The penultimate round of the Top 14 dished up a couple of upsets as Toulouse and Stade Français lost on the road to Bourgoin and Albi respectively on Saturday while Racing beat Biarritz to secure the final play-off spot.

Racing needed a 79th minute try to sneak past Biarritz, elemintaing the Basques from the play-off race.

Toulouse's chances of hosting a play-off are seriously compromised while Stade Français must now resign themselves to probably missing out on a European place next season.

But the story of the day was Toulon's victory over the title holders Perpignan to take the championship lead for the first time since the creation of Top 14.

Montauban look set for relegation - financial debacles aside - after losing at home to Montpellier.

Bayonne took a big step towards survival and ended Brive's play-off hopes at the same time with a much-needed victory at home.

If - by some miracle - Montauban find the nearly €2m needed to balance their books, their final day tussle with Bayonne will take on epic proportions.

Results:

Clermont 25 - 19 Castres
Bourgoin 15-13 Toulouse
Montauban 6-19 Montpellier
Albi 38-24 Stade Français
Bayonne 33-25 Brive
Toulon 33-23 Perpignan
Racing Metro 29-22 Biarritz

Standings:

1 Toulon 76
2 Perpignan 75
___________
3 Clermont 74
4 Castres 73
5 Toulouse 70
6 Racing-Métro 64
___________
7 Biarritz 58
8 Brive 57
9 Stade Français 53
10 Montpellier 51
11 Bourgoin 49
12 Bayonne 47
____________
13 Montauban 45
14 Albi 24

________________________________________________________________________

Clermont Auvergne 25-19 Castres Olympique
Parc des Sports Marcel Michelin, Clermont Ferrand

Read the match report here

________________________________________________________________________

CS Bourgoin-Jallieu 15-13 Stade Toulousain
Stade Gerland, Lyon

Bourgoin will play in the Top 14 next season thanks to typically courageous battle as they scored their first ever win at Lyon's soccer stadium.

A full-strength Toulouse side came to play, and play they did, scoring the game's only try in the ninth minute when Virgil Lacombe crashed over.

Toulouse led 10-6 at the break but the Heineken Cup semi-finalists fell into the same trap they have far too often this season, trying too much, too soon and their lack of patience cost them dearly.

Argentine full-back Alberto Di Bernardo kicked all five of Bourgoin's penalties, finally giving his side the lead for just seven minutes from full-time.

________________________________________________________________________

RC Toulon 33-23 USA Perpignan
Stade Vélodrome, Marseille

What a story it's been for Toulon, who move to the summit of the standings. Le RCT are without doubt serious contenders for the title off the back of yet another convincing display.

Toulon captain Joe Van Niekerk was the inspiration behind a dominant start in a hard-fought tussle as the hosts took the early lead, capitalising on a couple of Catalan errors.

Pierre Mignoni set Luke Rooney up for the game's first try before Perpignan hit back as Farid Sid touched down.

Rooney's second try gave Toulon a 18-13 lead at the break.

Jonny Wilkinson found the mark with a neat drop in the second half to add to his efforts from the tee but a try from Grégory Le Corvec put the defending champions right back into the game.

Wilkinson had the last laugh however, slotting a mammoth drop goal in the dying minutes to deny Perpignan a losing bonus point.

________________________________________________________________________

SCA Albi 38-24 Stade Français
Stadium Municipal, Albi

Another failure for Stade Français, who now have no hope of making the play-offs and need a miracle to sneak into Europe through the back door. (They need to finish seventh with a French club winning the tournament).

Victory for Albi means they can leave the Top 14 with their heads held high.

Flanker Antoine Burban and wing Mirco Bergamasco each scored a try for the visitors in the first half but five penalties from Albi full-back Benjamin Lapeyre ensured the hosts led 15-12 at half time.

Second half tries from wing Dave Valinqueur, Kevin Boulogne, Lapeyre gave Albi and incredible 38-12 lead before late touch downs from Lionel Beauxis and Guillaume Bousses gave the Stade scoreline some semblance of respectability.

________________________________________________________________________

Montauban 6-19 Montpellier HRC
Stade Sapiac, Montauban

With so much at stake, this was never going to be a high-scoring affair and Sapiac was witness to real arm wrestle.

Five yellow cards were dished out as tempers flared and it took half-an-hour for the first points to be scored. Argentine full-back Fédérico Todeschini gave the visitors a 3-0 half-time lead.

Julien Audy put the hosts a 6-3 ahead with two penalties early in the second half only for Todeschini to level the scores after 50 minutes.

France fly-half Francois Trinh-Duc proved to be the difference between the sides with a drop and then a try in the dying minutes to hand his side victory and assure Montpol of a place in the Top 14 next season.

________________________________________________________________________

Aviron Bayonnais 33-25 CA Brive-Corrèze
Stade Jean Dauger, Bayonne

Bayonne climb out of the red zone with one final showdown in Montauban left on the menu.

Brive's hopes of a place in the play-offs evaporated as Bayonne put in one of their best performances of the season, keeping ball in hand and playing some entertaining rugby.

A try form Thibaut Lacroix and Cédric Garcia's boot gave the Basques a 16-0 lead after half-an-hour before Alexis Palisson's penalty left the scores 16-3 at the break.

Brive came back strongly in the second half with Jamie Noon replying to Sam Gerber's try for Bayonne.

Jean-Baptiste Péjoine scored to put the visitors right back in the game but when Ross Filipo crossed for Bayonne with twelve minutes to play, the result looked sealed.

Fabrice Estebanez's late try proved to be too little too late for the Correziens

________________________________________________________________________

Racing Metro 29- 22 Biarritz Olympique
Stade Yves Du Manoir - Colombes (Paris)

What a finish! Racing secured the sixth and final play-off berth with a dramatic comeback, snatching victory at the very death.

A Dimitri Yachvili penalty, two drops from Damien Traille and an Iain Balshaw try had Biarritz well ahead before Racing fly-half Jonathan Wisniewski nailed a penalty after the hooter to put the hosts on the scoreboard and leave the scores 14-3.

Racing started the second period strongly as Wisniewski added two more penalties but Aussie import Karmichael Hunt extended Biarritz's lead on 50 minutes to end a counter-attack started by Traille, who was in brilliant form.

Racing continued the fight and when Jonny Leo'o scored in the corner and Andrew Mehrtens slotted the conversion, the hosts were right back in the running.

Yachvili kicked another penalty but Mehrtens then slotted three more to level the scores at 22-22 with twelve minutes left and Balshaw in the sin bin for not releasing the ball when isolated in defence.

The extra man meant it was all Racing in the closing minutes. Sebastien Chabal's charge at the line was finally touched down by Bernard le Roux with the video ref handing Racing the lead for the first in the game in 79th minute!

Forthcoming Fixtures
FixtureDetails
All times are local
European Rugby Champions Cup
Saturday , October 25
Ulster vs ToulonUlster vs Toulon Preview
Scarlets vs LeicesterScarlets vs Leicester Preview
Bath vs ToulouseBath vs Toulouse Preview
Montpellier vs GlasgowMontpellier vs Glasgow Preview
Northampton vs OspreysNorthampton vs Ospreys Preview
Sunday , October 26
Clermont Auvergne vs Sale SharksClermont Auvergne vs Sale Sharks Preview
Castres vs LeinsterCastres vs Leinster Preview
Wasps vs HarlequinsWasps vs Harlequins Preview
Benetton Treviso vs Racing Metro 92Benetton Treviso vs Racing Metro 92 Preview
More European Rugby Champions Cup fixtures
European Rugby Challenge Cup
Saturday , October 25
Bucuresti vs Stade Francais14:00
Rovigo vs Cardiff Blues14:00
Exeter vs ConnachtExeter vs Connacht Preview
Oyonnax vs Gloucester19:45
More European Rugby Challenge Cup fixtures
Currie Cup
Saturday , October 25
Western Province vs LionsWestern Province vs Lions Preview
More Currie Cup fixtures
ITM Cup
Saturday , October 25
Taranaki vs TasmanTaranaki vs Tasman Preview
More ITM Cup fixtures
Recent Results
FixtureDetails
All times are local
European Rugby Champions Cup
Friday , October 24
Munster 14 - 3 SaracensMunster vs Saracens Report
More European Rugby Champions Cup results
European Rugby Challenge Cup
Grenoble 15 - 25 London Irish
La Rochelle 25 - 13 Bayonne
Brive 21 - 26 Zebre
Edinburgh 25 - 17 LOU Rugby
Newport Gwent D'gons 26 - 30 Newcastle
Thursday , October 23
London Welsh 20 - 52 Bordeaux-BeglesLondon Welsh vs Bordeaux-Begles Report
More European Rugby Challenge Cup results
European Rugby Champions Cup
Sunday , October 19
Ospreys 42 - 7 Benetton TrevisoOspreys vs Benetton Treviso Report
Toulouse 30 - 23 MontpellierToulouse vs Montpellier Report
Toulon 28 - 18 ScarletsToulon vs Scarlets Report
Leinster 25 - 20 WaspsLeinster vs Wasps Report
More European Rugby Champions Cup results
European Rugby Challenge Cup
London Irish 70 - 14 RovigoLondon Irish vs Rovigo Report
More European Rugby Challenge Cup results
International Match
Saturday , October 18
Australia 28 - 29 New ZealandAustralia vs New Zealand Report
More International Match results
European Rugby Champions Cup
Sale Sharks 26 - 27 MunsterSale Sharks vs Munster Report
Saracens 30 - 23 Clermont AuvergneSaracens vs Clermont Auvergne Report
Racing Metro 92 20 - 11 NorthamptonRacing Metro 92 vs Northampton Report
Glasgow 37 - 10 BathGlasgow vs Bath Report
Leicester 25 - 18 UlsterLeicester vs Ulster Report
More European Rugby Champions Cup results
European Rugby Challenge Cup
LOU Rugby 28 - 18 London WelshLOU Rugby vs London Welsh Report
Cardiff Blues 37 - 14 Grenoble
Stade Francais 22 - 38 Newport Gwent D'gons
Bayonne 30 - 24 Exeter
Connacht 48 - 12 La Rochelle
Zebre 24 - 33 Oyonnax
More European Rugby Challenge Cup results
Currie Cup
Lions 50 - 20 SharksLions vs Sharks Report
More Currie Cup results
Aviva Premiership Table
PosTeamPPts
1Northampton625
2Saracens622
3Exeter620
4Bath620
5Wasps615