What to remember from the 22nd day of Top 14

The leader: Montpellier insures Perpignan

With the win (13-23) at Aimé-Giral against USAP and a 10-point lead over third-placed Castres, Montpellier can hope to advance directly to the quarter-finals with four rounds to go. We regret the missed outing of the children of the Catalan country, Guilhem Guirado and Enzo Forletta, exfiltrated at halftime when they could have enjoyed an ovation from their former audience. For the rest, even reduced to a time of thirteen, a good defense and the second row double from South African Janse van Rensburg (30th, 74th) kept the Héraultais out of trouble.

The achievement: Toulon pulverizes Lyon at Gerland

Who would have thought that the last in the standings on the seventeenth day would be able to secure a place in the final stage five days later? With the return of the Blues, winger Gabin Villière and left winger Jean-Baptiste Gros, crowned with their Grand Slam, we have to believe the magic has worked. The international team (Tolofua, Etzebeth, Rebbadj, Ollivon, Isa, Serin, Carbonel, Kolbe, Setiano, Nakarawa) finally managed to play together. And the Lyonnais, broken after Kolbe’s “cap” attempt under Nakaitaci and Arnold’s beard, conceded a 32-0 in the second half to finish at 10-43.


The number of successes outside the home: Toulon to Lyon, Pau to Biarritz, Montpellier to Perpignan and La Rochelle to Bordeaux.

The frustration: Bordeaux-Bègles too short

It’s been four times in a row that the Girondins have failed to beat Stade Rochelais, on their way to becoming their black (and yellow) beast… Beaten to the ground and in the air (thirteen balls recovered in the meeting points ) by the Maritimes) against a team that had voluntarily limited its offensive ambitions, no doubt with a view to the next European games, the Bordelais have never found the key to this Atlantic derby. In contrast to the Rochelais who achieved a short but crucial success after two assists (17th, 30th) and a goal by Ihaia West at the siren (15-16).

The question: playing at home no longer has an advantage?

We have to go back to the 7th day to find a better ratio with five successes along the way. Last weekend, four home successes showed that home teams are not immune to disappointment. Four days after the end of the phase, there is no advantage left in the house: this axiom is now strongly present in the minds of the people. The prospect of the endgame undoubtedly changes perception.


Twenty-two points ahead of Biarritz, Pau opener Antoine Hastoy (211 points) has become the new leader in the ranking of best directors, ahead of Lyonnais Léo Berdeu (198).

The verdict: “Keep your feet on the ground”

Thomas Domingo, coach of the attackers of Pau, victorious in Biarritz (19-42) : “These four points are important for the end of the season and for morale. We were able to come back from last week against USAP (win without bonus, 27-22). This victory in Biarritz gives us a big step “on the road to retention, but you have to keep both feet on the ground. The top 6 is a different story, the teams in front of us are very competitive.”


By scoring a try against Toulon, Lyon scrum half Baptiste Couilloud (9 tries) is now the top scorer in the Top 14. This is also the number of tries scored during the Paris derby.

The next day: shock at the top in the Hérault

After the round of 16 round trip, the Championship resumes its rights with the journey from Clermont to Castres and from Pau to Paris (Saturday 14:15). Racing 92 and La Rochelle should still take a lot of points by receiving Biarritz and Perpignan respectively.

Lyon will try to make up for their loss at home to Toulon during their trip to Brive (Saturday 5:15 PM). Varois awaiting Toulouse in Mayol (Saturday, 21:05). And this 23rd day ends with the shock of the frontrunner between Montpellier and Bordeaux-Bègles at the GGL stadium (Sunday, 21:05).

Montpellier: the Altrad group gets Endel, a subsidiary of Engie

what to remember from Monday 4 April