Planet Rugby

Top 14 Wrap: Perpignan win in Paris

05th March 2011 15:48

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David Marty Perpignan Stade Francais

Another win in Paris: David Marty carries it up for Perpignan

Perpignan effectively ended Stade Français' chances of making the pay-offs with their fifth consecutive win in the French capital.

Bayonne did their play-off hopes the world of good with a vital win over Toulouse in San Sebastien, Spain.

Biarritz were given an almighty scare in a eight-try thriller against La Rochelle, holding on to win by just two points over the smallest club in the Top 14.

Racing Métro needed a try three minutes into extra time to clinch a bonus-point win in Bourgoin to stay hot on the heals of leaders Toulouse.

Castres scored their first win on the road this season in Brive who missed a golden opportunity to distance themselves from the relegation scrap.

Montpellier were also given a scare but managed to maintain their unbeaten home record with a one-point win over Agen.

On Friday, Clermont came out on top in battle with Toulon that will be remember more for the multiple punch-ups than the rugby played.

Results:

Clermont 19-12 Toulon
Bourgoin 19-38 Racing Métro
Biarritz 32-30 La Rochelle
Brive 12-20 Castres
Stade Français 9-21 Perpignan
Bayonne 19-13 Toulouse
Montpellier 25-24 Agen

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Stade Français Paris 9-21 USA Perpignan
Stade Jean Bouin, Paris

Unless Stade Français win theAmlin Challenge Cup, they can forget about playing in the Heineken Cup next season.

Once again the Parisians put on an error-riddled display that summed up their season: Plenty of positive intentions but zero execution.

Perpignan weren't brilliant either, but victory in Paris is enough to keep them in the hunt for the play-offs.

Despite a lively start , the first half ended try-less. Stade Français fly-half Lionel Beauxis was having a shocker of a day at the kicking tee after finding the mark once early on. Julien Dupuy took over the goal-kicking responsibilities and nailed two penalties just before half time to give the hosts a 9-6 lead.

The second half belonged to Perpignan however and the visitors moved ahead when scrum-half Florian Cazenave touched down.

The Catalans scored a second try on the 50-minute mark when Romanian loose forward Ovidu Tonita crashed over from short range after taking a penalty quickly.

Metronome Jerome Porical added the rest of USAP's points.

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CS Bourgoin-Jallieu 19-38 Racing-Métro 92
Stade Pierre Rajon, Bourgoin

A Julien Saubade intercept try from inside his own half after the final hooter gave Racing the bonus-point that they sought.

Racing led 17-9 thanks to a try from Benjamin Fall and three penalties from Jonathan Wisniewski.

Bourgoin fought gallantly and were rewarded with try for full-back Mael Moinot in the final stages. But it was too little too late since, as expected, the hosts couldn't match the Parisians for firepower.

Scrum-half Nicolas Durand scored soon after the restart before Fijian loose forward Jone Qovu crossed to put the result beyond doubt.

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Biarritz Olympique 32-30 Stade Rochelais Atlantique
Parc des Sports d'Aguilera, Biarritz

Phew! The Basques breathed a huge sigh of relief when visiting full-back Benjamin Dambielle missed a late conversion that would have leveled the scores.

Biarritz were in total control until the last half-an-hour when La Rochelle staged a remarkable comeback to equal their hosts' four tries.

Tries from Takudzwa Ngwenya, Dimitri Yachvili and Marcelo Bosch gave Biarritz a 27-11 lead at half time.

When Iain Balshaw crossed the whitewash soon after the restart the game looked done and dusted. But les Rochelais, who are fighting for Top 14 survival, weren't going to go down without a fight.

Samoan prop Tamato Leopolu carshed over before the visitors were awarded a penalty try for series of professional fouls by Biarritz, which also saw Magnus Lund sent to the sin bin.

There was high drama when La Rochelle fly-half Rémi Talès, who had scored late in the first half, dived over for his second try with just six minutes left on the clock. Dambielle missed the conversion however, leaving La Rochelle two points short of a draw. A losing bonus point could however prove precious.

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CA Brive Corrèze 12-20 Castres Olympique
Stade Amédée Domenech, Brive

Castres snatched their first win away from home this season and 79th minute penalty also deprived Brive of a losing bonus point, meaning les Correziens are still threatened with relegation.

With La Rochelle getting a point in Biarritz, Brive are left just two points above the relegation zone.

Castres on the other hand are still on track for a place in the knock out phases thanks to tries from wing Marc Andreau (26th min) and Yoan Audrin (62nd min).

Brive led 12-10 at half time thanks to four penalties from Mathieu Bélie, but the hosts were kept score-lees in the second period.

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Aviron Bayonnais 19-13 Stade Toulousain
Estadio Anoeta, San Sebastien (Spain)

A massive result for Bayonne, who were able to overcome their off-field issues to get right back into the play-offs picture.

A losing bonus point for Toulouse, snatched after the final hooter, means they lead the championship by three points from Racing.

Toulouse did most of the playing but were unable to find their way over the whitewash until the very end. Bayonne took a more cautious approach but were able to capitalise on their chances.

Despite dominating both territory and possession, Toulouse were trailing their hosts 16-3 at half time after Yoann Huget intercepted a Yannick Jauzion pass to score. Toulouse's only first-half points came from a David Skrela drop.

Benjamin Boyet nailed his third penalty to extend the Basques' lead after the break, but Toulouse kept attacking.

In the last play of the game, Fred Michalak took a penalty quickly. Jauzion found Vincent Clerc on his inside and the international wing burst clear and score to secure a losing bonus point for les Toulousains

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Montpellier HR 25-24 SU Agen
Stade Yves Du Manoir, Montpellier

Agen came close to causing the upset of the day but, just like their relegation battle rivals La Rochelle and Brive, they will have to settle for a losing bonus point.

The visitors led 7-3 at half time thanks to an early try from Fijian wing Saimoni Vaka.

Montpellier's Argentine wing Santiago Bustos Moyano kicked five second half penalties to add to his score opener to keep the scoreboard ticking for the hosts.

Agen scrum-half Alexis Bales scored his side's second try on 56 minutes to level the scores at 12-all before Bustos Moyano put Montpol back in front.

It was anyone's game going into the last five minutes but the home pack set up a try for scrum-half Julien Tomas.

Agen's Ivorian full-back SilvereTian scored in the 80th minutes to grab a losing bonus point for the visitors.

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ASM Clermont Auvergne 19-12 RC Toulon
Parc des Sports Marcel Michelin, Clermont Ferrand

On Friday, Clermont battled their way to victory in a foul-tempered encounter.

In a match marred by a number of serious punch-ups, Clermont led from start to finish but were made to fight (sometimes quite literally) very hard to maintain their unbeaten record at home this season.

Read the match report here.

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