Agen too strong for Calvisano
Fri, 18 Jan 2013 18:46
Three tries to none
Agen finished their European Challenge Cup campaign on a high as they saw off Calvisano 19-9 at the Stade Alfred Armandie on Friday.
Neither side had any hope of beating Pool Four leaders Bath to qualification for the quarterfinals but Calvisano had revenge on their minds having lost the reverse fixture 36-31 back in October.
And at one stage it looked as though the Italians might see that mission through as three Paul Griffen penalties gave the visitors a narrow lead at half-time, although it was Agen who crossed for the only try in the opening 40 minutes.
Former Azzurri scrumhalf Griffen struck as early as the second minute and he did so again 12 minutes later to make it 6-0 to Calvisano before the quarter of an hour mark.
Agen hit back on the half hour when hooker Julien Janaudy crossed for a score that was converted by flyhalf Raphael Lagarde, but Griffen's third penalty ensured the hosts trailed at the break.
It was all Agen in the second period, though, with their second try coming just five minutes after the restart. This time it was openside flank Pierre Julien who did the damage, although Lagarde missed the extras to ensure the advantage was just three points at 12-9.
Both sides had players yellow carded in the 53rd minute, with right wing Belisario Agulla of Agen and Calvisano back row Giacomo Brancoli spending 10 minutes in the bin.
And it was the home team who coped better with 14 men as they created some valuable breathing space by claiming their third try just a minute after the sin binnings.
Blindside flank Antoine Erbani was the man to cross for the crucial score, with Lagarde's second conversion making it a 10-point ball game.
Agen failed to push on for a bonus-point score in a disjointed final 25 minutes but they were good value for their third win of a campaign that saw them shocked by Bucharest Wolves in Round Three but only lose to runaway winners Bath by a combined tally of eight points in rounds two and five.
Tries: Janaudy, Julien, Erbani
Cons: Lagarde 2
Pens: Griffen 3
Yellow cards: Belisario Agulla (Agen, 52), Giacomo Brancoli (Calvisano, 52)
Agen: 15 Louis Bataille, 14 Belisario Agulla, 13 Vincent Roux, 12 Benjamin Petre, 11 Romain Edmond-Samuel, 10 Raphael Lagarde, 9 Alexi Bales, 8 Uelenitoni Fono, 7 Pierre Julien, 6 Antoine Erbani, 5 Damien Lagrange, 4 William Demotte, 3 Gert Muller, 2 Semisi Telefoni, 1 John Schwalger.
Replacements: 16 Julien Janaudy, 17 Yannick Pitton, 18 Viliamu Afatia, 19 Léo Bastien, 20 Remi Vaquin, 21 Sylvain Dupuy, 22 Silvere Tian, 23 Leka Tagotago.
Calvisano: 15 Shaun Berne, 14 Pablo Canavosio, 13 Andy Vilk, 12 Tommy Castello, 11 Ben De Jager, 10 Paul Griffen, 9 Gullo Palazzani, 8 Samu Vunisa, 7 Stefano Scanferla, 6 Giacomo Brancoli, 5 Filippo Gerosa, 4 Jaco Erasmus, 3 Salvatore Costanzo, 2 Gabriele Morelli, 1 Andrea Lovotti.
Replacements: 16 Andrea Gavazzi, 17 Marco Coletti, 18 Elia Violi, 19 Paino Hehea, 20 Michele Andreotti, 21 Gabriele Cicchinelli, 22 Simon Picone, 23 Giovanni Frapporti.
Referee: Ian Tempest (England)
Assistant referees: David Rose (England), Nigel Carrick (England)
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