Portugal Colonial - Down to 13, Pau cling on against Toulouse in Top 14

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Down to 13, Pau cling on against Toulouse in Top 14
Down to 13, Pau cling on against Toulouse in Top 14

Down to 13, Pau cling on against Toulouse in Top 14

Pau held on to beat reigning French and European champions Toulouse 27-22 in the Top 14 on Saturday despite playing the last 30 minutes with 13 men.

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The result kept Toulouse fifth in the Top 14. Pau remain mid-table.

Against a Toulouse team shorn of players on Six Nations duty, the home team moved into a 17-3 lead after 32 minutes with tries by Australian lock Steve Cummins and Samoan centre Tumua Manu.

They did not slow even after Manu was sent off a minute after his try after flattening the hulking Alban Placines, who had a 13kg advantage.

After Placines missed with a flailing punch, Manu threw a crisp right followed by a left uppercut. Even though it was not clear the second punch landed, the Toulouse lock collapsed holding his face.

Manu received a red and Placines was replaced by Yannick Youyoutte.

Pau kept building their lead and after a converted 49th minute try by wing Eliott Roudil the home team led 27-3.

But they faltered after Jale Vatubua was sent off for his high, late tackle on Toulouse centre Santiago Chocobares in the 50th minute. Chocobares was carried off on a stretcher.

Toulouse briefly found space and scored three tries in eight minutes. The first two were by one winger Dimitri Delibes and the third by the other Matthis Lebel to cut the gap to five points with 17 minutes left.

The closing stages were marked by several bad-tempered incidents as Toulouse squandered scoring chances against their depleted opponents.

M.A.Vaz--PC