Wednesday, December 04, 2013
Toulon suffered a heavy defeat to Stade Francais in round 13 of the Top 14 as their star studded side went down 23-0 at the Stade Jean-Boiun stadium. One positive for the visitors was the form of Mathieu Bastareaud, who made this huge charge early on.
Two second half tries and the boot of Julien Dupuy helped Stade Francais to a well deserved win over Toulon, who had many stars in the first fifteen, but were missing key man Jonny Wilkinson.
It was actually in the flyhalf channel that they conceded one of the Stade tries, as talented number ten Jules Plisson cruised straight through a fairly feeble tackle attempt by Frederic Michalak.
With Bryan Habana and Drew Mitchell starting for the visitors, Toulon weren't without attacking threats but failed to create anything of note in what was a fairly dour affair.
One highlight was this big run by the incredibly powerful Bastareaud, who returned from Test duty with France to throw his weight around in the midfield. He showed that he's not only a bit of a wreckingball, but also has quick feet and isn't too bad on defence either.
This particular run ended badly for lock Alexandre Flanquart, who felt the full force of Bastareaud and had to leave the field not too long afterwards, likely due to the knock he received in contact.
Stade Francais scored a late try to add further gloss to the scoreline, as Meyer Bosman kicked a loose ball ahead and Geoffrey Doumayrou picked up the scraps, before replacement flyhalf Morne Steyn slotted the conversion.
Toulon president Mourad Boudjellal has since blamed his team's scrum for the loss, saying it is the worst in the Top 14. It doesn't get any better for them either with the news that former England prop Andrew Sheridan might be forced to retire due to a neck injury.
Posted in See it to Believe it