Saint-Andre buoyed by win over Toulouse
April 18, 2011
Philippe Saint-Andre © Getty Images
Toulon coach Philippe Saint-Andre believes the club is now in control of its own destiny following Saturday's hard fought 21-9 win over Toulouse in Marseilles.
That victory left Saint-Andre's side in seventh, just a point outside the playoff places ahead of next weekend's must-win tie against eighth-placed Perpignan at Stade Mayol.
Saint-Andre told Var Matin: "Our destiny lies in our own hands. We're not going to give up. We had a great second half. We created a couple of opportunities that could have given us the bonus point.
"The last five or six weeks have been difficult to manage but we proved today that we still have the desire and the energy. There is pressure everywhere, both inside and outside of the team. We'll have to prepare well for the visit of Perpignan."
Stade Francais coach Michael Cheika has predicted revenge against Clermont Auvergne in the Challenge Cup semi-final following his charges' 20-12 loss to Les Auvergnats at the Stade de France.
The loss to Clermont in front of 73,000 paying spectators was Stade Francais' 13th of the season, cementing what is likely to be their worst league finish in 14 years.
"I'm sad. We were close yet at the same time never really put Clermont in danger," he told Midi Olympique. "We missed too many things to take the win today. But we have the ability. We know we can do it so why not in two weeks' time in the Challenge Cup?"
Meanwhile, new Bayonne president Michel Cacouault had insisted that coach Christian Gajan's job is safe, despite rumours that millionaire backer Alain Affelou is ready to offer a big money deal to bring Jake White to the Basque country.
Gajan's men bounced back from the recent boardroom strife to record a 22-17 win away at Montpellier, a result that keeps their playoff hopes alive.
"There is no question of White at Bayonne," Cacouault told Sudouest. "Leave me work with Christian Gajan. I've discussed things with the president, who has all the keys. I've confidence in him. From my point of view, I'm relaxed and will continue to work."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
Ahead of November's USA-All Blacks match, America's ESPN Magazine explains rugby to its readers who may not be familiar with the game
Tom Hamilton talks to World Cup-winning captain John Smit about life after rugby, his fears over the South African exodus and the World Cup
The reopening of the openside debate, a dominant wolf-pack and a sublime performance in defeat - Monday Maul looks at the weekend's talking points
The latest Week in Pictures takes in the Rugby Championship alongside the best photographs from around the domestic game