Giteau in contention for Top 14 return

Beth Newman Profile
by Beth Newman

Wallabies back Matt Giteau is set to feature in his first match in more than three months, named on the bench for Toulon this weekend.

Giteau has been on the sidelines since undergoing surgery to fix a groin injury suffered all the way back in May 2015.

Toulon has timed Giteau’s run perfectly, with the 32-year-old on the pine for this match against Top 14 leaders Clermont, just a week out from the European Champions Cup knock-out stages starting.

Drew Mitchell will also return to the side, starting at fullback, while James O’Connor will be injected off the bench.

Adam Ashley-Cooper and Sekope Kepu started for Bordeaux in an eight-point loss to Racing Metro.

Kepu played 67 minutes in the loss, that keeps them fifth in the Top 14 competition ahead of another European tournament break.

Ashley-Cooper played out the full match at outside centre for Bordeaux.

Racing 92 rested former New Zealand flyhalf Dan Carter, with a blockbuster Champions Cup quarter-final against Toulon looming.

Peter Kimlin started at blindside flanker for Grenoble in a 27-20 win over Oyonnax overnight, playing out the full match.


A Cooper Vuna try wasn’t enough for the Worcester Warriors to avoid a 50-12 loss at the hands of Exeter.

Vuna scored in the 32nd minute to make scores 17-5, but by then the Chiefs already had the upper hand.

Former Wallabies captain James Horwill played 50 minutes in the Harlequins’ 46-25 win over Newcastle, ending a run of two straight losses.

Peter Betham had his own five-pointer for Leicester in a 35-30 win over Gloucester.

Betham finished off a strong lineout pay for his team, collecting a Manu Tuilagi offload to put the Tigers within striking distance of Gloucester.

Another Tigers try snatched the win for Leicester in the 74th minute and put them back into the top four of the Premiership.

George Smith will start at openside flanker for Wasps on Monday morning, when they take on Northampton.

Wasps have pulled off a surprising Premiership campaign, to sit third after 18 matches and just two and a half wins out of top spot.


Taqele Naiyaravaro played 19 minutes for Glasgow in a 38-16 win over struggling Italian side Benetton Treviso, coming on for Lee Jones in the 61st minute.