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Montpellier rally to beat Clermont, Brive off the bottom

Nadolo taken down whilst playng Clermont

Nemani Nadolo and Francois Steyn scored two tries apiece as Montpellier fought back to beat Clermont Auvergne 28-24 and Brive moved off the bottom of the Top 14 table with a victory over fellow strugglers Stade Francais.

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Montpellier were in danger of slipping to a fourth defeat in five matches in all competitions when they trailed by 10 points in the second half, but Vern Cotter’s men came storming back to reduce Lyon’s advantage at the summit to just a point.

Clermont arrived at the Altrad Stadium on the back of three successive wins and struck the first blow on Sunday when Patricio Fernandez nipped through a gap for a try which he converted only three minutes in.

Prolific wing Nadolo powered his way over to get big-spending Montpellier on the board, but Fritz Lee added a second for Clermont as the visitors went in at the break with a 17-14 advantage, Steyn reducing the deficit with his first try.

Peter Betham’s converted score put Clermont 24-14 to the good with Montpellier a man down after Henry Immelman was sent to the sin-bin late in the first half.

Nadolo and Steyn completed doubles in quick succession, Benoit Paillaugue converting both tries, to make it advantage Montpellier. They were able to hold on despite Nadolo seeing yellow 15 minutes from time.

Oyonnax prop up the table after Brive edged a 20-19 win over Stade.

Matthieu Ugalde and Thomas Laranjeira went over and Gaetan Germain scored 10 points from the tee as Brive sealed a second Top 14 win of the season to move just five points behind lowly Clermont.

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