Saturday 21 April 2018

Giteau holds his nerve as Toulon flex their muscles

Toulon's Matt Giteau added the all-important kick nine minutes from time to help his side beat Bordeaux-Begles last weekend. Photo: David Rogers/Getty Images
Toulon's Matt Giteau added the all-important kick nine minutes from time to help his side beat Bordeaux-Begles last weekend. Photo: David Rogers/Getty Images

Declan Rooney

Munster's Heineken Cup semi-final opponents Toulon took a massive step towards qualification for next year's tournament with their Top 14 victory over Bordeaux-Begles last weekend.

In the process they gave themselves a timely lift when they came from behind to carve out an excellent win as the countdown to the Heineken Cup semi-final continues.

In their 14th league win of the season, it didn't look too rosy for the conquerors of Leinster as they trailed 17-6 at half-time, but two penalties from Freddie Michalak in the last 10 minutes of the half brought Bernard Laporte's side back into the game.

After the restart they improved hugely and two further kicks from Michalak and Bryan Habana's try 15 minutes from time gave Toulon the lead for the first time in the game.

Pierre Bernard looked to have taken the game away from Toulon with his fourth successful kick in the third quarter, but after the South African flyer's score, Matt Giteau added the all-important kick nine minutes from time to wrap up the win.

With just two rounds remaining before the play-offs for the Bouclier de Brennus begin, Toulon can seal their last-six spot with victory over Perpignan at the Stade Aime Giral.

If they retain their second place berth for the next two games, they will receive a bye into the semi-final play-offs.

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