Racing 92 beats Clermont and qualifies for the semi-finals

Virimi Vakatawa against the Clermontois, September 19, 2020.

After cutting their teeth on Lyon and Montpellier in the Top 14, Racing 92 made short work of Clermont (36-27), Saturday, September 19, in the quarter-finals of the European Cup. The Racingmen will meet the Saracens, title holders, in the semi-final.

The Clermontois, them, were too undisciplined, too absent, to worry their opponents. Archi-dominated in scrum, they conceded eleven penalties at the break, including three for Etienne Falgoux alone. The pillar was also given a yellow card (27th minute) for a thrust across. And the goalscorer of Racing 92 Teddy Iribaren (author of twenty points in this match) was responsible for sanctioning Clermont. After 40 minutes of play, Clermont was led by sixteen points (24-8).

The trials of Wesley Fofana (59th, 30-15), Kotaro Matsushima (69th, 33-22), then Damian Penaud (72nd, 36-27) were only illusory. The Auvergne reaction, too late, did not change much.

Winners in hens

In the last four, Racing 92 will therefore face an opponent that it dominated in the group stage, finishing first in group 4, ahead of the Sarries: in the first leg, the Ciel et Blanc won easily (30-10 ) while, on the way back, already qualified, they had just fallen (27-24). The French will have the opportunity to win the beauty in their Arena in a week.

It will however be without Kurtley Beale, the flagship rookie of the summer, still suspended after a high tackle on the young Montpellier international center Arthur Vincent last week. Without Louis Dupichot either, probably, the Ile-de-France winger having gone out on a stretcher after 20 minutes of play, after having scored the first try of the meeting.

His replacement, François Trinh-Duc, celebrated his second European match of the year 2020 with a try, 244 days after that registered against… the Saracens in January.

European dream

Laurent Travers, who had lined up nine players from the training center on the scoresheet, knows that he still has work to do before the reunion with the Sarries.

Finalist in 2016 and 2018, Racing has displayed its ambition, Camille Chat, Finn Russell or Teddy Iribaren ensuring they want to finally win the European Cup. After having passed a first test in Clermont in the quarter, the Racingmen will have the opportunity to prove it against the English ogre.

The English, promised a relegation to the second division for having bypassed the salary cap, only have the European Cup to play and they have shown it by driving on the Leinster (25-17), yet fresh winner Pro 14 with sixteen victories in as many matches.

Read also Rugby: a European Cup under pressure for the Saracens

The World with AFP


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