Goosen injury overshadows Montpellier win over Toulon

Johan Goosen (Gallo Images)
Johan Goosen (Gallo Images)

Paris - A serious ankle injury suffered by South Africa flyhalf Johan Goosen put a dampener on Montpellier's 29-17 French Top 14 win over Toulon on Sunday.

Goosen was stretchered off in just the sixth minute as he dived in for a try which was eventually ruled out.

Montpellier, however, gathered themselves to run in four tries and move into fourth spot in the table with a third successive win.

Three-time European champions Toulon, however, remain third from bottom and still without an away point all season despite making eight changes to the team defeated by Clermont last time out.

Montpellier ran in four tries through Benjamin Fall, Timoci Nagusa, Jan Serfontein and captain Louis Picamoles and were 29-10 ahead after 50 minutes.

Ikpefan, after 29 minutes, and Anthony Meric, in the dying moments, crossed for Toulon.

Toulon's All Blacks wing Julian Savea, who has still to get off the mark this season, at least had the consolation of playing a major part in Meric's score when his no-look pass at speed to Francois Trinh-Duc allowed the ball to free Meric.

Toulon's misery was completed when former New Zealand flank Liam Messam was red-carded in injury time for a dangerous tackle on centre Yvan Reilhac.

Stade Francais claimed a third away win in four outings as they inflicted a 14-9 defeat on defending champions Castres to reclaim second place.

Jules Plisson kicked three penalties and wing Julien Arias scored the game's only try early in the second half as Castres suffered a first home loss of the season.

The hosts salvaged a consolation defensive bonus point as Rory Kockott knocked over his third penalty of the contest in the final minute although Castres dropped to fifth.

Stade finished just three points above the relegation playoff spot last term after winning away from home just once all season, but former South Africa coach Heyneke Meyer has turned their fortunes around since taking charge.

"I'm very proud of my players and their performance," said Meyer, whose side rebounded from a 17-16 defeat at home to Racing 92 last weekend.

"To win at Castres, it was the best way of getting over our failure against Racing."

Asked about his team's considerable improvement on the road, he replied: "It was a point we touched upon during our pre-season training camp.

"It's a question of mentality, of state of mind. The players believe in performing well away from home. Today we also had a bit of luck."

French Top 14 results on Sunday:

Castres 9 Stade Francais 14

Montpellier 29 Toulon 17

Played on Saturday:

La Rochelle 16 Clermont 12

Grenoble 28 Bordeaux-Begles 25

Pau 12 Perpignan 9

Racing92 13 Lyon 19

Toulouse 10 Agen 0

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