There were some big results and battered bodies at the end of Round 5 in the Top 14 as the French rugby scene showed off its best.
La Rochelle opened proceedings with a 62-3 thrashing of rivals Castres at Stade Marcel-Deflandre. The visitors were comprehensively outplayed in every facet of the game. Dillyn Leyds was a particular thorn in Castres’ side with the brilliant attacking performance with included an 80m try.
In the second game of the round, Montpellier were ruthless against Agen, the final whistle blowing with the score at 42-13. Live-wire Springbok and Montpellier scrumhalf Cobus Reinach was his usual menacing self, bagging a brace of tries.
Game three took the form of a somewhat closer encounter as Pau edged out Bordeaux 29-24 in a victory the former will revel in for some time to come after not being given much of a chance before the game. Pau owe their win to a brilliant fight-back in the second stanza which allowed them enough points to put Bordeaux away, even after the latter nearly snatched it at the end.
Toulouse showed why they are at number one on the log with a solid 36-16 victory over Brive. The game was a competitive one until Toulouse pulled away in the final quarter to put themselves safely out of reach.
Lyon brought the hammer down on Bayonne, running out 62-10 victors at Matmut Stadium. Bayonne were never in the game but still managed to run in two tries. Josua Tuisova was in blistering form for the home side, carving up the defence at will.
The final game of Round 5 saw Clermont prove themselves too much for Stade Francais. Clermont were awarded a penalty try at a crucial time in the game (just before half-time) while Stade Francais were also shown a yellow card, putting their opponents in a commanding 31-13 position with half an hour to go. Stade Francais fought hard and managed to add two more tries but Clermont added another ten points to their tally to put them in the winners’ column.