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Benetton seal a home play-off

CHALLENGE CUP REPORT: Tomas Albornoz led Benetton to a fine victory in the EPCR Challenge Cup, beating Montpellier Herault Rugby 27-19.

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Both sides knew they were already through to the knockout stages, but Montpellier went into the match unbeaten and on top of the pool.

The flyhalf grabbed the majority of the points for the hosts in the first half, beginning with a 14th-minute penalty, and following that with a try six minutes later, which he converted himself.

On the half-hour, he added the extras for Onisi Rateve’s try, meaning Benetton went in 17-5 up at the break after centre Auguste Cadot crossed for Montpellier.

But the pool leaders came out fast after the interval, with prop Baptiste Erdocio crossing on 47 minutes, converted by Paolo Garbisi.

It took another Albornoz penalty to give Benetton a bit more breathing space, and after Louis Foursans-Bourdette converted hooker Vano Karkadze’s 67th-minute try, it was the Argentinian who scored the final try of the afternoon to seal the victory.

The result means Benetton have secured home advantage in the Round of 16 of the EPCR Challenge Cup.

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The scorers:

For Benetton:
Tries: Albornoz 2, Ratave
Cons: Albornoz 2, Umaga
Pens: Albornoz 2

For Montpellier:
Tries: Cadot, Erdocio, Karkadze
Cons: Garbisi, Foursans-Bourdette

Yellow card: Gianmarco Luchessi (Benetton, 78)

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Teams:

Benetton: 15 Rhyno Smith, 14 Ignacio Mendy, 13 Tommaso Menoncello, 12 Malakai Fekitoa, 11 Onisi Ratave, 10 Tomas Albornoz, 9 Alessandro Garbisi, 8 Lorenzo Cannone, 7 Manuel Zuliani, 6 Alessandro Izekor, 5 Eli Snyman (captain), 4 Edoardo Iachizzi, 3 Giosue Zilocchi, 2 Bautista Bernasconi, 1 Thomas Gallo.
Replacements: 16 Gianmarco Lucchesi, 17 Mirco Spagnolo, 18 Tiziano Pasquali, 19 Federico Ruzza, 20 Sebastian Negri da Ollegio, 21 Michele Lamaro, 22 Andy Uren, 23 Jacob Umaga.

Montpellier: 15 Julien Tisseron, 14 Pierre Lucas, 13 Thomas Darmon, 12 Auguste Cadot, 11 Ben Lam, 10 Paolo Garbisi, 9 Leo Coly, 8 Marco Tauleigne, 7 Clement Doumenc, 6 Florian Verhaeghe, 5 Paul Willemse (captain), 4 Bastien Chalureau, 3 Titi Lamositele, 2 Brandon Paenga-Amosa, 1 Baptiste Erdocio.
Replacements: 16 Vano Karkadze, 17 Enzo Forletta, 18 Harry Williams, 19 Tyler DuGuid, 20 Sam Simmonds, 21 Louis Foursans-Bourdette, 22 Masi Dakuwaqa, 23 Anthony Bouthier.

Referee: Morne Ferreira (South Africa)
Assistant referees: Marius van der Westhuizen (South Africa), Aimee Barrett-Theron (South Africa)
TMO: Marius Jonker (South Africa)

 

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