French Top 14: Toulon v Clermont Preview

Clermont will be looking to keep their slim hopes of a playoff berth alive when they take on Toulon on Sunday the 25th of March.

There's a heavyweight French Top 14 clash set to lighten up a dour Sunday with Toulon and Clermont locking horns at the Stade Felix-Mayol. The visitors have been in solid touch of late and their three-match unbeaten streak has seen them close the gap on the sides that currently occupy the playoff berths. One of the aforementioned play-off occupants just happen to be Toulon, who could see their lead over Clermont cut to just five points should the visitors claim a bonus point win here.

Toulon v Clermont
Sunday 25 March
Stade Felix-Mayol
16:50


To Win (80 Mins)
Toulon 2/9
Draw 21/1
Clermont 31/10


Toulon

Last year's defeated finalists have a chance to exempt some revenge for that 2016/17 showpiece loss to Clermont by defeating the reigning champions this Sunday. A defeat for the visitors would possibly be the death nail on their title defence as they would have a mountain to climb, to reach the playoffs, and not much time to do it in.

Enough about Clermont though, this is the Toulon segment of the piece after all. The hosts head into Sunday's clash off the back of some patchy form with victories over La Rochelle (20-27) and Agen 54-5 being overshadowed by a 15-6 loss to Lyon and a 29-26 loss to Oyonnax. They will need to bounce back from the aforementioned defeat to Oyannax rather quickly or risk dropping out of the top 7.

Clermont

It's been a good couple of weeks for the reigning champions who have rediscovered some of their 2016/17 form. Wins over La Rochelle (21-17), Brive (9-11) and, most recently, Pau (38-14) have seen Lyon make up a lot of ground on the current playoff occupants.

The most exciting thing about the above results was that Clermont seemed to rediscover some of their swagger against Pau last weekend. While their victories over La Rochelle were hard fought and dour, their victory over Pau was more fluid. Perhaps the reigning champions have hit their straps at just the right time?

Verdict: Clermont 3110
They've found some form and I reckon that they'll give a hit-and-miss Toulon side all sorts of problems this coming Sunday. 

Written by Darry Worthington for @Hollywoodbets.net

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