Top 14 wrap: Stade on fire

Date published: March 28 2015

Stade Français kept themselves in the race for a Top 14 semi-final spot with a convincing win over Clermont at Jean Bouin.

In the battle between third and second, it was the Parisians who emerged victorious in a nine-try thriller, 40-26.

Elsewhere La Rochelle stunned Bordeaux-Bègles on their own patch 22-14, while Montpellier hammered Lyon 45-17.

Finally Oyonnax cruised past Brive 24-3 to move back into the top six.


Bayonne 6-12 Racing-Métro
Stade Français 40-26 Clermont Auvergne
Bordeaux-Bègles 14-22 La Rochelle
Montpellier 45-17 Lyon
Oyonnax 24-3 Brive
Still to follow
Toulon v Toulouse
Grenoble v Castres

Stade Français 40-26 Clermont
Stade Jean Bouin, Paris

Stade Français made a statement with a thumping win over Clermont at Jean Bouin to get their play-off campaign back on track.

The Parisians ran in five tries in a thrilling encounter as they ended a run of two straight defeats on home soil.

The news is less promising for Clermont, who will have to lick their wounds and bounce back quickly before next week's Champions Cup quarter-final against Northampton.

The game started at a frantic pace and it was the home side who dominated early on scoring the first try through their Fijian winger Nayacalevu Waisea.

After a long period of possession on the Clermont line, Aurélien Rougerie rushed out in attack and Stade put the ball through the hands quickly to send the winger over in the corner.

Jules Plisson converted and added a penalty to make it 10-0, but Clermont hit back with a try from Peceli Yato, their young back rower.

After Napolioni Nalaga had gone clean through in midfield, Clermont went right and then back left, with Yato strolling through thanks to a big overlap.

Still, Stade looked the more dangerous side, and they ran in a second try thanks to Jonathan Danty. The powerful centre slipped out of a couple of tackles, showing quick feet in addition to his strength to crash over.

And they weren't done yet, adding another penalty from Plisson before Zak Taulafo went over on the stroke of half-time. After setting up a rolling maul, the Samoan prop peeled off and dived over in the corner, with Plisson completing a perfect first half from the kicking tee to make it 27-7.

Clermont looked out of it but they hit back in the second half thanks to a double from Nalaga. Twice he went over in the left corner, with the second score particularly impressive after a magnificent pass out of the tackle by Sébastien Vahaamahina to send him over.

Brock James converted the first but not the second, still Clermont were back to within eight points with 20 minutes remaining.

Stade were in danger of letting the win slip through their fingers, but they responded well, first with a penalty from Plisson, before the fly-half picked out Julien Arias with a perfectly-judged cross-kick.

The victory was in the bag, but Stade had more to offer, and they went back to their rolling maul to send Laurent Sempéré over for a fifth Stade try.

The scorers:

For Stade Français:
Tries: Waisea, Danty, Taulafo, Arias, Sempéré
Cons: Plisson 3
Pens: Plisson 3
Yellow Card: Lavalla

For Clermont:
Tries: Yato, Nalaga 2, Vahaamahina
Cons: James 3

Stade Français: 15 Djibril Camara, 14 Nayacalevu Waisea, 13 Geoffrey Doumayrou, 12 Jonathan Danty, 11 Julien Arias, 10 Jules Plisson, 9 Julien Dupuy, 8 Jono Ross, 7 Raphaël Lakafia, 6 Antoine Burban, 5 Alexandre Flanquart, 4 Hugh Pyle, 3 Zak Taulafo, 2 Rémi Bonfils, 1 Heinke van der Merwe
Replacements: 16 Laurent Sempéré, 17 Zurabi Zhvania, 18 Gerhard Mostert, 19 Scott Lavalla, 20 Julien Tomas, 21 Morne Steyn, 22 Jérémy Sinzelle, 23 Davit Kubriashvili

Clermont: 15 Nick Abendanon, 14 Zac Guildford, 13 Aurélien Rougerie, 12 Benson Stanley, 11 Napolioni Nalaga, 10 Brock James, 9 Thierry Lacrampe, 8 Damien Chouly, 7 Alexandre Lapandry, 6 Peceli Yato, 5 Paul Jedrasiak, 4 Julien Pierre, 3 Clément Ric, 2 Benjamin Kayser, 1 Thomas Domingo
Replacements: 16 Ti'i Paulo, 17 Vincent Debaty, 18 Sébastien Vahaamahina, 19 Fritz Lee, 20 Ludovic Radosavljevic, 21 Mike Delany, 22 Noa Nakaitaci, 23 Davit Zirakashvili

Referee: Cedric Marchat

Bordeaux-Bègles 21-22 La Rochelle
Stade Chaban Delmas, Bordeaux

La Rochelle stunned Bordeaux-Bègles with a dominant first half, to ease their relegation fears and all but end Bordeaux's hopes of making the play-offs.

Les Rochelais have improved their away form in recent weeks, having failed to pick up a point on their travels in the first half of the season.

After a narrow loss at Toulouse, they drew at Montpellier, and here they made the perfect start.

Three penalties from Fabien Fortassin gave the visitors an early 9-0 lead, before Hikairo Forbes powered over after a good chip and chase from Jean-Pascal Barraque.

Bordeaux, who have been so strong at home this season, found themselves trailing 16-0, but they at least managed a Pierre Bernard penalty before the break.

He added two more in the second half, but Fortassin responded with a penalty of his own to make it 19-9.

Bordeaux hadn't given up hope though, and got back in it when Sofiane Guitoune went over after a break from Jayden Spence.

Fortassin added another penalty for La Rochelle, but they finished with 14 men when Levani Botia was sent off for a tip tackle on Pierre Bernard.

With the extra man, Bordeaux at least saved a losing bonus point thanks to a try from Metuisela Talebula in the final minute, converted by Bernard.

The scorers:

For Bordeaux-Bègles:
Tries: Guitoune, Talebula
Con: Bernard
Pens: Bernard 3

For La Rochelle:
Try: Forbes
Con: Fortassin
Pens: Fortassin 4
Red Card: Botia

Bordeaux-Bègles: 15 Sofiane Guitoune, 14 Metuisela Talebula, 13 Jayden Spence, 12 Thibault Lacroix, 11 Blair Connor, 10 Lionel Beauxis, 9 Baptiste Serin, 8 Matthew Clarkin, 7 Hugh Chalmers, 6 Louis-Benoit Madaule, 5 Jandre Marais, 4 Julien Ledevedec, 3 Francisco Gomez Kodela, 2 Ole Avei, 1 Laurent Delboulbès
Replacements: 16 Beñat Auzqui, 17 Jefferson Poirot, 18 Berend Botha, 19 Peter Saili, 20 Yann Lesgourgues, 21 Julien Rey, 22 Pierre Bernard, 23 Jean-Baptiste Poux

La Rochelle: 15 Kini Murimurivalu, 14 Malietoa Hingano, 13 Jean-Pascal Barraque, 12 Levani Botia, 11 Sireli Bobo, 10 Peter Grant, 9 Julien Audy, 8 Kevin Gourdon, 7 Romain Sazy, 6 Jason Eaton, 5 Leandro Cedaro, 4 Romana Graham, 3 Vincent Pelo, 2 Hikairo Forbes, 1 Thomas Synaeghel
Replacements: 16 Benjamin Geledan, 17 Jordan Seneca, 18 Jone Qovu, 19 Nicolas Djebaili, 20 Julien Berger, 21 Eliott Roudil, 22 Fabien Fortassin, 23 Lekso Kaulashvili 

Referee: Pascal Pechambert

Montpellier 45-17 Lyon
Altrad Stadium, Montpellier

François Trinh-Duc made a stunning comeback as he helped Montpellier to a comfortable win over Lyon on his first start since October.

Fit-again after his broken leg, Trinh-Duc scored an early try before creating a second for Robert Ebersohn after just eight minutes.

Stephen Brett had slotted a penalty in between, but Montpellier led 14-3 very quickly.

Fulgence Ouedraogo was next to go over, crashing through from close range, but Lyon hit back with a try from Emmanuel Felsina on the half-hour.

Montpellier ran in a fourth try before the break, through Yohann Artru after Benoit Paillaugue's little inside ball.

Thanks to Ben Lucas' kicking, Montpellier led 31-8 at the break, and but Lyon were given a lifeline early in the second half when Robins Tchale Watchou was sin-binned.

Their numerical advantage lasted just two minutes though, with Ricky Januarie sent off two minutes after coming on for a stamp.

Still, Lyon kept fighting, adding three penalties to cut the deficit to 31-17.

Montpellier were comfortable though, and had time to run in two more tries, the first a penalty score, before Wynand Olivier went over in the final minutes.

The scorers:

For Montpellier:
Tries: Trinh-Duc, Ebersohn, Ouedraogo, Artru, Penalty
Cons: Lucas 5
Pen: Lucas
Yellow Card: Tchale Watchou

For Lyon:
Try: Felsina
Pens: Brett 3, Munro 2
Red card: Januarie

Montpellier: 15 Ben Lucas, 14 Lucas Dupont, 13 Anthony Tuitavake, 12 Robert Ebersohn, 11 Pierre Bérard, 10 Francois Trinh-Duc, 9 Benoit Paillaugue, 8 Akapusi Qera, 7 Ben Mowen, 6 Fulgence Ouedraogo (c), 5 Thibaut Privat, 4 Sitaleki Timani, 3 Nicolas Mas, 2 Charles Géli, 1 Mikheil Nariashvili
Replacements: 16 Mickael Ivaldi, 17 Chris King, 18 Robins Tchale Watchou, 19 Antoine Battut, 20 Jonathan Pélissié, 21 Wynand Olivier, 22 Yohann Artru, 23 Pat Cilliers

Lyon: 15 Romain Loursac, 14 Toby Arnold, 13 Kendrick Lynn, 12 Fabrice Estebanez, 11 Mosese Ratuvou, 10 Stephen Brett, 9 Mathieu Lorée, 8 George Smith, 7 Karim Ghezal, 6 Julien Puricelli, 5 Lionel Nallet (c), 4 Simon Njewel, 3 Anthony Roux, 2 Damien Fitzpatrick, 1 Emmanuel Felsina
Replacements: 16 Deon Fourie, 17 Florin Balan, 18 Masi Matadigo, 19 Eugene N'Zi, 20 Enrico Januarie, 21 Thibaut Regard, 22 Lachie Munro, 23 Horatiu Pungea

Referee: Laurent Cardona

Oyonnax 24-3 Brive
Stade Charles Mathon, Oyonnax

Oyonnax cruised past Brive thanks to a brace from Silvère Tian and moved up to fifth in the Top 14 as a result.

After a tryless first half, Oyonnax led 6-0 thanks to two penalties from Benjamin Urdapilleta.

They stretched that advantage to 12 with two more penalties from the Argentine fly-half before Tian went over for the first time after good work from his pack.

Gaëtan Germain at least got Brive on the board but Tian completed his double after popping up in support for Fabien Cibray.

Oyonnax tried to get a bonus point with a third try, but they were kept out, with both sides finishing with 14 players after yellow cards for Ruan du Preez and Goderdzi Shvelidze. 

The scorers:

For Oyonnax:
Tries: Tian 2
Con: Urdapilleta
Pens: Urdapilleta 4
Yellow Card: Du Preez

For Brive:
Pen: Germain
Yellow Card: Shvelidze

Oyonnax: 15 Florian Denos, 14 Silvère Tian, 13 Guillaume Boussès, 12 Roimata Hansell-Pune, 11 Dug Codjo, 10 Benjamin Urdapilleta, 9 Fabien Cibray, 8 Viliami Ma'afu, 7 Olivier Missoup, 6 Maurie Fa'asavalu, 5 Damien Lagrange, 4 Leon Power, 3 Marc Clerc, 2 Jody Jenneker, 1 Antoine Tichit
Replacements: 16 Paula Ngauamo, 17 Ruaan du Preez, 18 Miroslav Nemecek, 19 Pedrie Wannenburg, 20 Yohan Domenech, 21 Régis Lespinas, 22 Hemani Paea, 23 Soane Tonga'uiha

Brive: 15 Gaëtan Germain, 14 Guillaume Namy, 13 Thomas Sanchou, 12 Sevanaia Galala, 11 Benito Masilevu, 10 Riaan Swanepoel, 9 Jean-Baptiste Péjoine, 8 Sisa Koyamaibole, 7 Poutasi Luafutu, 6 Petrus Hauman, 5 Arnaud Méla, 4 Peet Marais, 3 Kevin Buys, 2 Francois da Ros, 1 Johannes Coetzee
Replacements: 16 Thomas Acquier, 17 Goderzi Shvelidze, 18 Dominiko Waqaniburotu, 19 Said Hirèche, 20 Damien Neveu, 21 Romain Sola, 22 Alfi Mafi, 23 Giorgi Jgenti

Referee: Christophe Berdos