London Irish edge past Stade Francais
December 8, 2013
Stade Francais' Richard Kingi is tackled by the London Irish defence © Getty Images
Two tries either side of half-time were enough to give London Irish a key 24-13 win over Stade Francais on Sunday.
In a match that saw five yellow cards handed out, Tom Fowlie and Alex Lewington's tries saw London Irish home along with 14 points from the boot of Shane Geraghty. Stade stayed in touch with Olivier Mossoup's try giving them some hope, but Irish managed to close the match out having three times being reduced to 14 men.
Elsewhere on Sunday, Newcastle Falcons put five tries past Calvisano as Dean Richards' men stormed to a 37-15 triumph.
The Falcons points came thanks to a double from Noah Cato, a try from Zach Kibirige, a penalty try and one from Chris York. Michele Visentin and Braam Steyn managed to get some points on the board for Calvisano but they proved to be little more than consolation scores.
Late on Saturday, Charlie Hayter scored twice as Wasps gave another demonstration of their title credentials, winning 47-7 away to Grenoble.
Dai Young's side won their third successive tie to regain top spot in Pool Four as they ran in seven tries in total. Alongside Hayter's double, Viliami Helu, Jack Moates, Josh Bassett and Guy Thompson (two) also scored.
Richard Lane bagged a hat-trick of tries as Bath continued their impressive run of form and crushed Mogliano 55-8 in the Amlin Challenge Cup.
The result was never in doubt for Bath as tries from Dom Day, Carl Fearns and Lane (two) had the bonus point wrapped up by half-time. Bath continued to control every phase of the game in the second 40, with Kyle Eastmond's try, two more from Lane, a penalty try and Day's second giving Bath a commanding victory.
The Dragons put themselves on course for the Amlin Challenge Cup knock-out stages as they saw off Bordeaux-Begles 40-24 in Newport.
Patrick Leach went over after just six minutes and by the half-hour mark Matthew Pewtner and Hallam Amos had crossed to put Dragons in control, though Jefferson Poirot's close-range try kept the visitors in contention as the sides went in at 22-10 at half-time.
Jason Tovey kept the Dragons ticking over with the boot, and would end the night with 15 points, but sustained pressure from the visitors was rewarded with a penalty try 15 minutes after the restart. For the briefest of moments it looked like Dragons had a fight on their hands, but Toby Faletau barged over to settle the nerves two minutes later before Ashley Smith added a fifth in the closing stages.
Worcester's woes continued after a last-gasp try from Tanguy Molcard saw them lose 19-15 to Biarritz in the Amlin Challenge Cup.
The Warriors had lost all seven previous fixtures at Sixways this season but looked set to break their duck thanks to tries from Dean Hammond and Alex Grove, and the boot of Chris Pennell. However, Molcard crossed with the very last play to leave Worcester head coach Dean Ryan waiting for his first win in 12 European and Aviva Premiership games this term.
Despite Biarritz's victory, Sale clung on to the top spot in Pool One thanks to a bonus point in their 16-10 defeat to Oyonnax.
The French club have been giant killers in the Top 14 and an Augustin Figuerola try ensured they claimed their first European win before Joe Ford snatched a losing bonus point with a late drop goal.
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd
Huw Richards assesses where Wales are after a mixed Six Nations, with front row seats still very much available for the World Cup
John Mitchell lapped up the action on 'Sensational Saturday' - but warns not to expect a repeat come Rugby World Cup time later this year
Craig Dowd warns England, Ireland and Wales they should play to their strengths rather than those of the All Blacks and the Wallabies
Tom Hamilton runs the rule over just where the six countries stand ahead of the global gathering in September