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Last Updated: Sunday, 22 May, 2005, 16:14 GMT 17:14 UK
Stade Francais 12-18 Toulouse
MATCH SUMMARY
Gareth Thomas
Stade Francais (12) 12
Pens: Skrela (4)
Toulouse (6) 18
Pens: Elissalde (3), Michalak (2)
DG: Michalak
Toulouse became the first side to win the Heineken Cup three times after a nail-biting victory over French rivals Stade Francais at Murrayfield.

They trailed 12-9 with just two minutes left when Frederic Michalak slotted a simple penalty to force extra-time.

Michalak edged Toulouse ahead with a further penalty before David Skrela, who kicked all of Stade's points in the match, missed a chance to level.

Michalak then made sure of the win with a long-range drop goal.

It was tough luck on Skrela, who only missed one kick all afternoon, but in the end Toulouse were worth their victory in only the second game in this season's tournament to feature no tries.

Stade Francais number 10 Skrela converted four penalties in the first half, while Jean-Baptiste Elissalde responded with two for Toulouse, who included Wales captain Gareth Thomas in their starting line-up.

Elissalde added another in the second half before Michalak took over kicking duties.

The Toulouse celebrations were marred by a bizarre incident as their coach Guy Noves was led away by the police after an apparent altercation with stewards at the end of the game.

The match started with Toulouse going close from a Michalak cross-kick but the Stade Francais pack then took the upper hand.

They initially established superiority in the scrums and although Toulouse fought back in that phase of the game, they continued to struggle in the lineout.

The Stade Francais lineout functioned far better and they put Toulouse under pressure on their own throw throughout the game.

And although it failed to bring an end product in terms of the result it meant Toulouse failed to secure enough good possession.

Toulouse infringements gave the Paris side the chance to take an early 6-0 lead through two Skrela penalties.

It was a hard-fought first 40 minutes and both kickers added two further penalties to make it 12-6 at the break.

Sadly for Stade Francis that was the end of their scoring, although they did not help themselves with their conservative game plan.

Toulouse took a long time to get going but they cut the gap to three points after 49 minutes and finally drew level through Michalak's penalty with three minutes to go.

From then on they looked the more likely winners and Michalak slotted a further penalty and a drop goal to give Toulouse victory.


Stade Francais: Henandez, Arias, Glas, Liebenberg, Dominici, Skrela, Pichot, Roncero, Blin, De Villiers, Auradou, James, Mauro Bergamasco, Martin, Sowerby.
Replacements: Kayser, Marconnet, Brouzet, Rabadan, Sarramea, Filol, King.

Toulouse: Poitrenaud, Clerc, Jauzion, Fritz, Thomas, Michalak, Elissalde, Poux, Servat, Hassan, Pelous, Millochlusky, Brennan, F Maka, Labit.
Replacements: Bru, Human, Bouihlou, I Maka, Dubois, Gerard, Heymans.

Referee: Chris White (RFU)




SEE ALSO
Cardiff lands Heineken Cup final
17 May 05 |  European Club
Heineken Cup 2004/5
24 Apr 05 |  European Club
Michalak doubt for Heineken final
16 May 05 |  European Club


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