Top 14

Poitrenaud hailed as Toulouse triumph, Toulon too strong for Castres

The departing Clement Poitrenaud was afforded a standing ovation at Stade Ernest-Wallon as Toulouse edged closer to securing a place in the Top 14 play-offs with a 52-19 victory over Agen.

Former France back Poitrenaud, a three-time European champion with Toulouse, announced his intention to retire from European club rugby at the end of the season earlier this week.

He duly led the team out for Sunday's home fixture, before being brought off with a minute remaining to rapturous applause.

Toulouse coach Ugo Mola opted against introducing a player in Poitrenaud's place and subsequently explained: "The symbolism was strong enough. I do not think we replace a guy like Clement with anyone."

For his part, Poitrenaud reiterated his desire to feature again this season, stating: "I'm still available to the team, as I have been for 16 years."

Sunday's eight-try victory - featuring braces for Gael Fickou and Gillian Galan - lifted Toulouse to fifth in the table, while rock-bottom Agen's inevitable relegation was confirmed.

Seventh-placed Castres' push for a top-six finish was dented by a 17-7 loss at Toulon, who reclaimed third.

Josua Tuisova and Ma'a Nonu crossed for the soon-to-be-deposed European champions on a wet and windy evening, with Thomas Combezou's 79th-minute reply no more than a consolation.