'It's terrible to commit such a professional foul'
TOP 14, FRIDAY WRAP: Bayonne head coach Yannick Bru said Joe Ravouvou was “humble” after the former New Zealand Sevens international scored his first try for the club in Friday’s 26-19 Top 14 victory over 14-man Stade Francais.
Ravouvou crossed in the opening quarter before Fijian prop Luke Tagi was sent off with five minutes to play for headbutting Ugo Boniface as the Basque club beat the Parisians away from home for the first time since November 2010.
“Joe’s plugging away, it’s a gamble we took. Today he showed a little bit of his potential, I’m sure he has more to give, he’s very humble and wants to succeed,” Bru said.
“It’s a little bonus to win here and it’s good for the confidence of the boys. The only thing that counts is the extra four points on the table.”
Tagi’s ill-discipline comes with fellow tighthead prop Paul Alo-Emile also suspended for next week’s trip to Agen for a dangerous tackle against Castres on September 13.
“Frankly it’s terrible to commit such a professional foul. It’s a real shame and puts us in a difficult position for the games to come,” Stade Francais head coach Gonzalo Quesada said.
A maximum of 1 000 spectators was allowed into Stade Jean-Bouin due to coronavirus restrictions in the hosts’ first home game since February.
Nicolas Sanchez opened the scoring for Stade with a penalty after three minutes before Ravouvou crossed for his maiden five-pointer on the 10-minute mark.
Centre Yan Lestrade made a break into the hosts’ half and grubber kicked the ball for an onrushing Ravouvou to dive over in the corner.
Gaetan Germain’s conversion and two penalties made it 13-3 to Bayonne after 25 minutes before Argentina flyhalf Sanchez cut the deficit to seven points just before the break.
Sanchez set up his side’s first try of the night as his dart 10 metres from the line led to Tonga fullback Telusa Veainu sneaking over for his first try for his new side. The flyhalf also nailed the conversion to make it 13-13.
Germain, who spent two seasons at Racing 92 earlier in his career, established a 10-point gap with half an hour to play with a converted try and a penalty.
The Bayonne fullback intercepted France centre Gael Fickou’s looping pass before adding five points from the boot for a 23-13 advantage.
Sanchez’ replacement Joris Segonds and Germain traded kicks at goal and the visitors led 26-19 with a quarter of an hour to go as the visitors held on despite late pressure for the four points and second-straight league win.
Elsewhere, 13-man Brive beat 14-man Pau 19-13 in an ill-disciplined affair as Mitch Lees and Setareki Bituniyata were shown red cards for the hosts while Clovis Le Bail was sent off for the visitors.
Castres’ trip to Montpellier and Racing 92’s visit of La Rochelle have been postponed due to Covid-19 cases.
The weekend rounds up on Sunday with Cheslin Kolbe’s Toulouse hosting Toulon, without fellow World Cup winner Eben Etzebeth who is suffering from a rib injury.