Brock James produced a piece of magic to set up a crucial try as Clermont survived a scare at the hands of Brive on Saturday, eventually coming out 36-29 victors. A late dash helped them extend their unbeaten home record at the Parc des Sports Marcel Michelin.
Brive were leading 26-23 with fifteen minutes left in one of the Top 14 games of the weekend.
Napolioni Nalaga had scored earlier in the contest but thanks to a piece of individual brilliance – or an incredibly lucky pass – he crossed for his second try with ten minutes left in the game. Replacement James, who made the wonder pass to free up the Fijian on the wing, then kicked them to victory.
The last time we saw this type of pass – almost a carbon copy in fact – was when Highlander Tamati Ellison did it against the Crusaders earlier this year. His reverse pass put Ben Smith away for a try, and was promptly called one of the greatest passes ever seen by commentator Scotty Stevenson.
This one is right up there, and in terms of significance in the match, was perhaps even better.
What was also impressive was that with such an apparent lack of control, and the nature of the flick, the ball didn’t go forward at all so the legitimacy of the try was never in doubt.
Clermont are now second on the Top 14 table after ten rounds, two points behind leaders Toulouse.
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