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Last Updated: Saturday, 11 December, 2004, 21:42 GMT
Perpignan 32-9 Dragons
Perpignan flanker Gregory Le Corvec
Perpignan (21) 32:
Le Corvec, Durand, Robertson, Van den Heever
Cons: Laharrague 3
Pens: Laharrague
Dragons (9) 9:
Pens: Sweeney 3
The Dragons chances of making the Heineken Cup quarter-finals were dealt a hammer blow by Perpignan at Stade Aime Giral on Saturday night.

Perpignan - still smarting from last weekend's loss at Rodney Parade - powered over for three converted tries in the opening quarter.

The Dragons' only reply came through three Ceri Sweeney penalties.

The win puts Perpignan back in the hunt in Pool Five - level on points with the Dragons and seven behind Newcastle.

Perpignan struck early after the Dragons back-line crept off-side and the home side spurned three points to kick for touch.

Flanker Gregory Le Corvec drove over for the try and fly-half Nicolas Laharrague - replacing first-choice Manny Edmonds - slotted the conversion.

Sweeney got the Dragons going with a penalty after Percy Montgomery was clattered late by Le Corvec.

But the Welsh side were immediately on the back foot when a long throw-in on their own line was fumbled by skipper Michael Owen.

The Perpignan forwards laid siege to the Dragons line but it was scrum-half Nicolas Durand who found a gap to burrow over for his side's second try.

Minutes later they had their third - a close-range effort from former All Black back-row Scott Robertson - and Laharrague's conversion extended the lead.

Sweeney stemmed the tide with two penalty goals and a clever chip from winger Gareth Wyatt gave his side their first sniff of a try before Montgomery spilled a straightforward pass.

Sweeney spurned a chance to close the gap just before half time and Perpignan led 21-9 at the interval.

After the break, Laharrague pulled Perpignan ahead with two quick three-pointers while Montgomery missed a chance from near the half-way line.

Finally, Perpignan hooker Jan van den Heever muscled his way over from a matter of inches to seal a bad day for the Welsh side.

Perpignan: Giannantonio; Bomati, Marty, Hume, Luger; Edmonds, Loustau (c); Chobet, Sempere, Debaty, Gaston, Alvarez Kairelis, Le Corvec, Roigt, Robertson.
Replacements: Van der Heever, Freshwater, Goutta, Durand, Laharrague, Manas.

Dragons: Montgomery; Wyatt, Brew, Tuipulotu, Morgan; Sweeney, Cooper; Black, Richards, Thomas, Gough, Sidoli, Oakley, Ringer, Owen (c).
Replacements: S Jones, Snow, Robinson, Edwards, Baber, Bryant, Warlow.

Referee: Dave Pearson (England).

Dragons close to WRU deal
09 Dec 04 |  Welsh


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