Tag: preview

Top 14 Preview: Pressure..? What Pressure?

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CASTRES, FRANCE – Heading into the final four weeks of this Top 14 campaign, only one thing is certain. Next season, the Simon Mannix-led Pau – or Section Paloise to give them their Sunday name – will join France’s top-flight for the first time in nine years, having dominated the second-tier ProD2 all season. By […]

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Top 14 Preview: No Respite For European Dreamers

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CASTRES, FRANCE – Toulon and Clermont – and probably Racing Metro – may wish they had a week off after the intensity of last weekend’s European Champions Cup quarter finals, but the Top 14 waits for no club. It won’t even wait for the Rugby World Cup, so three of the top four clubs have […]

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Top 14 Preview: French Intrigue Cushions Post 6 Nations Comedown

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CASTRES, FRANCE – How do you follow 27 tries and 221 points in three deliciously bonkers games? After last week’s insanely glorious final round of RBS 6 Nations matches, players and fans in France return to domestic Top 14 action with something of a bump. But there’s plenty of intrigue to soften the international-to-domestic comedown, […]

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Top 14 Preview: Why Only A Vintage Bordeaux Performance Will Be Good Enough

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CASTRES, FRANCE – To say Top 14 play-off contenders Bordeaux have had a tough run in the league recently is an understatement bordering on the obscene. The Begles have faced five top-six rivals in five Top 14 matches since the turn of the year. Last week, they lost to Stade Francais at home by a […]

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Top 14 Preview: Tension Mounts as Top 14 Enters Final Eight Weeks

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CASTRES, FRANCE – Eighteen regular Top 14 season weekends down, eight to go – and the play-off slots are currently occupied by, in order: Clermont, Toulon, Stade Francais, Racing Metro, Toulouse and Bordeaux. Breathing down Bordeaux necks are Grenoble and Oyonnax – followed by Montpellier who, despite their troubles earlier in the season, are ninth, […]

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Top 14 Preview: Sexton’s A Racing Certainty This Weekend – But McCaw Shrugs Off Pau Rumours

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CASTRES, FRANCE – Rumours that Richie McCaw would see out his career in France’s Top 14 after the 2015 Rugby World Cup would appear to be exaggerated. Earlier this week, the rugby press collectively wet itself over speculation that the All Black to rule them all could be heading to Pau, in the southwest of […]

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