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CHATEAU MONTPELLIER TAKES MAXIMUM 5 PTS

Lundi 24 Septembre 2012

 

The Bordeaux-Begles fine wine fest was held this weekend and Château Montpellier took all the honours, coming away with the gold medal and maximum points five out of five. This year’s vintage is a blend of third world wines (South African, Argentinean and Southern Pacific) on a base of good solid French stock with a little Georgian power thrown in for good measure... To the palate its first impressions are of an aggressive robustness and a solid defence of oak, but bringing it up to room temperature and you have its true worth, deep claret in colour, with a smooth delicate attacking precision engineered by its master of oenology Mon.Galthie, a wine of this nature is either to be used every weekend until maybe sometime around the 1st of June when it could well be on exhibition in Paris. Meanwhile on the other side of town there was a rugby match, this weekend Montpellier were away to one of last years promotion teams Bordeaux- Begles. The visitors Montpellier have not returned home this season with any points, so Saturday evening was a good time as any to put this situation firmly to bed. With multiple injuries to the Montpellier front row General Galthie threw in a new combination of Faamausili, Van Vuuren and Niarashvili upfront, with the young Eric Escande starting with the No.9 shirt for the first time this season. Montpellier from the first whistle started the game with an attacking flair that normally comes in the second half, they pummelled the Bordeaux Begles line from the beginning and had numerous chances of scoring, either they came up short or the Bordeaux defence just about held out, but it was all Montpellier and patience was going to bring results. After a series of pick and go’s by the forwards Rassie Van Vuuren gathered from the ruck and powered over for the first try of the game and his third of the season, Eric Escande added the extras, Bordeaux 0 Montpellier 7. Minutes later the very same Van Vuuren played scrum half went down the blind side giving Club Capt Fulgence Oeudraogo a perfect pass he did the rest outpacing the Bordeaux defence to dive over in the corner. The game was all Montpellier but with scrum infringements arriving nearly ever time the forwards met the referee punished Montpellier, giving Lopez the chance to keep Bordeaux in the game and in the first half he knocked over 3 penalties for the players to go into the break with the advantage just to Montpellier, 9-12.
 
The second half brought on a complete change with the props, newly signed Nahuel Lobo, his first outing for the Cistes accompanied by Vincent Pelo another new combination, but nothing had changed from the first half with Montpellier throwing the ball about and making serious headway into the Bordeaux defence.
 However the first score came to Bordeaux with Lopez hitting another penalty 12-12, Montpellier hit back with a penalty of their own creeping ahead 12-15, but the attacking attitude of Montpellier finally paid off, after a double pass between Tulou and Trinh-Duc the ball was thrown though the centres at pace with Benji Thiery finishing of the move in the corner, Brilliant!!! The bonus point for Montpellier and with 18 minutes left on the clock the visitors had to shore up their defence to keep hold of that invaluable 5th point, this they did, but there was another penalty for both sides, firstly Saubusse from 50 mts. and the final nail in the coffin by Eric Escande who kept his cool slotting over the final score of the game denying the home side a defensive bonus point.. The ref blew for the end with the score Bordeaux- Begles 15  Montpellier 23. Five beautiful but deserved points for Montpellier,  a performance of guts and aggression with some classy individual efforts made by several, Francois Trinh-Duc had his best game of the season so far, the pack played well as a unit, they suffered a little in the set pieces in the first half but got the better of Bordeaux in the second, Eric Escande did excellent for his tender 19 years, and all was animated and led by example from Captain Fantastic, but Man of the Match must go to Rassie Van Vuuren who was solid throughout scoring the first try, and making the second for Montpellier until he was replaced by Mika Ladhuie in the 59th minute.
 
The President Altrad was all smiles at the end of the game and surely he had slipped out at half time to purchase a case or two of Chateau Margaux 2000 for the flight back to Montpellier as the experts had already said that Chateau Montpellier still has time to mature.
 
Steve Whittell.