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Edinburgh 9-7 Stade Francais

Edinburgh (6) 9
Pens: Paterson 3
Stade Francais (7) 7
Tries: Pape Cons: Beauxis

Mark Robertson (right) is halted by the Stade Francais back-line.
Edinburgh had Stade Francais pinned back for long spells

Edinburgh ended their Heineken Cup campaign with a tense victory over Stade Francais at Murrayfield.

Chris Paterson scored three penalties to became Edinburgh's record points scorer in Europe.

Defeat at Ulster last weekend ended the home side's qualification hopes but they turned in a spirited display.

The visitors ensured there would be four French sides in the last eight, with a losing bonus point enough to secure top spot in Pool Five.

The margin of victory was narrow but deserved as Edinburgh outmuscled Stade Francais and had them pinned back for long spells in sodden conditions.

The trusty boot of Paterson opened the scoring with a penalty after Stade were penalised for infringing at the breakdown.

Despite the majority of the early exchanges being played in the visitors' half, it was the French side who registered the only try of the match as second row Pascal Pape powered over from close range, managing to evade three tacklers on his way to the line.

France international Lionel Beauxis landed the conversion.

That advantage was cut as half-time loomed, Paterson once again stroking over a penalty to ensure the game was finely poised entering the second period.

Edinburgh registered the only points of the second half, the accuracy of Paterson's kicking remaining impeccable as he slotted his third penalty of the game, capitalising on further Stade indiscipline on the floor.

Stade sent on Scotland international Simon Taylor, after 12 weeks out with a biceps injury, as the back-rower looks to prove his fitness to national coach Andy Robinson ahead of the Six Nations.

Taylor made a few telling interventions but could not prevent the Edinburgh pack from dominating around the fringes, the ubiquitous Roddy Grant looking dangerous throughout.

The Edinburgh forwards looked set to reap the rewards of their dominance, but a rampaging move resulted only in a five-metre attacking scrum after the hosts were held up over the try-line.

The Stade defence proceeded to withstand wave upon wave of attacks, until the colossal figure of France centre Mathieu Bastareaud brought a lengthy passage of play to a shuddering halt with a trademark big hit.

An incisive run from wing Mark Robertson enabled the home side to get back into Stade territory, and they were soon presented with an opportunity to stretch their lead as the visitors once again committed an offence at the breakdown.

With Paterson being replaced by Simon Webster, Jim Thompson and Phil Godman both failed with late penalty attempts, although they were not to prove costly.

Edinburgh: Paterson, Robertson, Cairns, De Luca, Thompson, Godman, Laidlaw, Traynor, Kelly, G. Cross, MacLeod, J. Hamilton, MacDonald, Rennie, R. Grant.
Replacements: Webster for Paterson (52), Houston for De Luca (41), Jacobsen for Traynor (64), Ford for Kelly (52), C. Hamilton for MacLeod (64), Newlands for Rennie (33). Not Used: Young, Samson.

Stade Francais: Beauxis, Gasnier, Messina, Bousses, Camara, Mieres, Southwell, Roncero, Szarzewski, Gerber, Palmer, Pape, Haskell, M. Bergamasco, Leguizamon.
Replacements: Bastareaud for Bousses (47), Slimani for Roncero (66), Kayser for Szarzewski (50), Ledesma for Gerber (58), Taylor for M. Bergamasco (52). Not Used: Vigouroux, Barraud, M. Bergamasco.

Att: 3,792

Ref: Wayne Barnes (RFU).

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see also
Bath 10-28 Ulster
23 Jan 10 |  Rugby Union
Ulster 21-13 Edinburgh
15 Jan 10 |  Rugby Union
Stade Francais 15-13 Bath
16 Jan 10 |  Bath
Heineken Cup 2009/10
22 Dec 09 |  Rugby Union
Heineken Cup tables
09 Aug 06 |  Tables

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