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December 07, 2003

Montpellier 11 - 30 Glasgow Warriors

Parker Pen Challenge Cup match played at Carcassonne on Saturday December 6th 2003 | No comments
An accomplished win against Montpellier in the opening round of the Parker Pen European Challenge Cup sets Glasgow up for a cracking tie in the return match at Hughenden next Friday night.

With Montpellier in the middle of the French storm disaster area and their Stade Sabathe under a metre of water midweek, it was remarkable that the rescheduled venue only 45 miles west at Carcassonne was in perfect condition both overhead and underfoot, the latter as a result of the local sides cancelling everything in order that the game could go ahead in the best possible conditions.

Glasgow were without first choice at fullback and centre, with Glenn Metcalfe suffering a knee injury and Graeme Morrison struck down with flu, but they still had the experience of five World Cup combatants against a team who were not even among the five seeded French sides competing in the tournament.

The 30 or so travelling Glasgow fans had no trouble making themselves heard in the small crowd of home fans who had made the journey from flood-hit Montpellier to Carcassonne for the opening tie of the Parker Pen European Challenge Cup. However, it was the French side who drew first blood when they kicked off and were awarded a penalty at the first ruck.

Stand-off Jeremy Valls kicked them into a 3-0 lead, but it was to be a short-lived period of ascendancy as sparky Glasgow hit back. From the first line-out, Glasgow worked the ball back to Dan Parks, whose hoist caught out fullback Sylvain Jouve on the Montpelleir 22 and from the penalty, Parks levelled the score. The home pack started to rumble and when a try looked imminent, prop Ewan Murray was penalised for Valls to push Montpellier back into the lead.

Glasgow were lucky to escape unpunished when a Gareth McClure chip was charged down and the scramble resulted in a penalty for Montpellier only for Jouve to push the kick wide. Valls sclaffed the return of Glasgow’s re-start and the visitors trundled into their opponents half but were forced on to the back foot by a long Jouve clearance but when the French side tried to handle for almost the first time, they spilled the ball, Glasgow pounced and Rory Kerr’s pass put Donny Macfadyen in. Parks converted to put Glasgow 10-6 ahead.

Parks was now showing the confidence to take the game to Montpellier and when his kick to the home 22 was guddled, the Glasgow pack arrived in numbers and from the ruck, Sean Lamont emerged to cross for a try under the posts, again converted by Parks.

Despite a couple of promising bursts from Jon Petrie and Graeme Beveridge, Glasgow couldn’t add to their score before the break and indeed had prop Clement Baicco not spilled the ball when almost over, the half-time lead would have been a lot less than 17-6 in Glasgow’s favour.

Montpelleir tried to up the pace from the re-start but Glasgow had no problems in defending and when Andy Henderson burst away, a try seemed on until he was downed on the Montpellier 22. The ball was shipped back to Parks who dropped a goal via post and bar to stretch the Glasgow lead.

The home side were sparky round the fringes and getting a touch fiery in the loose when their persistence finally paid off. After a prolonged spell of pressure, lock John Daniell crashed over.

Valls missed the kick and in the dying minutes, Parks kicked his third penalty then try No.3 came when Maclure burst down the touchline, cut inside and flipped the ball to San Pinder for the replacement scrum half to score at the posts for Parks final conversion to complete the scoring.

Report from The Scotsman

Referee S McDowell (IRE)
Man of the Match Andy Henderson
Euan Murray
Gordon Bulloch
Andrew Kelly
Andy Hall
Nathan Ross
Cammy Mather
Donnie Macfadyen
Jon Petrie
Graeme Beveridge
Dan Parks
Sean Lamont
Andrew Henderson
Gareth Maclure
Rory Kerr
Stuart Moffat
Scott Lawson
Lee Harrison
Joe Beardshaw
Paul Dearlove
Sam Pinder
Calvin Howarth
Alan Bulloch
Match Substitutions
Off On
Graeme Beveridge Sam Pinder
Off On
Gordon Bulloch Scott Lawson
Off On
Andrew Kelly Lee Harrison
Off On
Nathan Ross Joe Beardshaw
Off On
Jon Petrie Paul Dearlove
Dan Parks Penalty
Donnie Macfadyen Try 
Dan Parks Conversion
Sean Lamont Try 
Dan Parks Conversion
Dan Parks Drop
Dan Parks Penalty
Sam Pinder Try 
Dan Parks Conversion

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