Francis adds to Stade’s woes

Burton Francis and Johann Sadie guided Agen to a 28-23 victory against champions Stade Français in the Top 14.

The former Cheetahs teammates both got on the score sheet as Agen compounded Stade’s misery. Sadie scored one of three tries for the winners, while Francis kicked three penalty goals and slotted two conversions.

Flyhalf Jules Plisson succeeded with a late penalty to secure a losing bonus point for Stade, whose awful start to the season continued. The result however, wasn’t enough to lift Agen off the bottom of the standings.

Elsewhere, replacement flyhalf Lionel Beauxis came off the benched to help Bordeaux scrape past La Rochelle with 21-16. With his side trailing 16-12 in the latter stages, Beauxis held his nerve and nailed his kicks to hand his team a come-from-behind win.

Oyonnax thrashed Pau 42-23 at home, scoring five tries to three despite losing former Sharks hooker Jody Jenneker to the sin bin in the first half.

Racing had to dig deep to claim a hard-fought 17-14 win over visitors Brive. Three penalties by Gaetan Germain and a try by Sevanaia Galala put Brive on course for an away win, but Racing showed great resolve to stay in the game and when Brive were reduced to 13 men, Racing scored a late match-winning try by wing Marc Andreu.

Montpellier lost 33-25 to Toulouse in a high-qualify affair at Stade Altrad. Toulouse got off to a fast start, opening up a 20-3 advantage, before Montpellier mounted a comeback, which moved them to within six points of the leaders at 26-20. And while both teams scored again, Toulouse were able to hold on for the win.

Clermont hammered Castres 42-13 to finish at the summit of the log. Flyhalf Camille Lopez starred for Clermont, with a tally of 22 points via a try, four conversions and three penalties. Fullback Geoffrey Palis was Castres’ sole point-scorer, with a converted try and two penalties.

On Sunday, Gio Aplon scored one of three tries as Grenoble edged Toulon 33-29. Flank Steffon Armitage bagged a hat-trick for Toulon, while No 8 Mamuka Gorgodze scored a fourth for the bonus point, but the European champions still came up short against an inspired Grenoble outfit.

Round 7 results:

Agen 28 Stade Français 23
Bordeaux 28 La Rochelle 16
Oyonnax 42 Pau 23
Racing 17 Brive 14
Montpellier 25 Toulouse 33
Clermont 42 Castres 13
Grenoble 33 Toulon 29

Photo: Romain Perrocheau/Getty Images

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Mariette Adams