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- European Rugby Champions Cup
- Pool 1
- 12th Oct 2013
- KO 15:40
- Ground: Stade Pierre Antoine
- Att: 10,245
Heineken Cup Pool 1: Castres capitalise to inflict defeat on Northampton
- Betting on form
- Patience key for Ulster
- Relief for victorious McCall
- Solomons: We need consistency
- Davies: Gloucester stepped up
- Mallinder frustrated in France
- O'Shea slams 'basic errors'
- Tigers happy with a point
- Rees rues bad decisions
- Connacht v Saracens: Teams
- Toulouse v Zebre: Teams
- Gloucester v Perpignan: Teams
- Edinburgh v Munster: Teams
- Ulster v Leicester: Teams
- Ospreys v Leinster: Teams
- Harlequins v Scarlets: Teams
- Castres v Northampton: Teams
- Toulon v Glasgow: Teams
- Ulster keep Tigers at bay
- Leinster too smart for Ospreys
- Chiefs hold off Blues rally
- Clermont upstaged by Racing
- Glasgow grab gutsy bonus
- Late show rescues Gloucester
- Scarlets shock Quins
- Saracens survive huge scare
- Edinburgh end European drought
- Heineken Cup Preview
- Connacht v Saracens - Highlights
- Treviso v Montpellier - Highlights
- Gloucester v Perpignan - Highlights
- Ospreys v Leinster - Highlights
- Exeter v Cardiff - Highlights
- Toulon v Glasgow - Highlights
- Castres v Northampton - Highlights
- Ulster v Leicester - Highlights
French champions Castres inflicted a 19-13 defeat on Northampton in their opening Pool One Heineken Cup match at Stade Pierre Antoine.
Dylan Hartley claimed a try but Saints lacked the firepower to overcome the hosts, Steven Myler kicking a conversion and two penalties to at least ensure Saints left with a losing bonus point.
Saints dominated during the first 25 minutes of the game, getting all the possession they wanted but not being able to break a strong and aggressive French defence line.
And they gifted Castres their first try when Romain Martial ran back an interception almost the full length of the field after 11 minutes.
Despite having all the ammunition they could ask for and Courtney Lawes dominating at the lineout, with two steals in the first 15 minutes, Northampton's flat attacking line could find no solution. Only Myler was able to get on the board with the boot after 31 minutes.
The French side fed on their opponents' mistakes and Rory Kockott was able to add a penalty two minutes before half-time and Ben Foden was sent to the bin in the last period of play.
Kockott increased the French champions' lead four minutes into the second half with a another kick to goal.
Northampton then had to show great resilience to get back in the game in the second half, which started in similar fashion. However, after a series of rolling mauls and lineouts, Hartley was able to take advantage of a Castres fumble and score. Myler converted and Saints were within three points.
Kockott immediately added three points to his personal tally after a penalty given away at the breakdown by Christian Day.
Both teams struggled to inject rhythm and pace into the game after the hour mark, Saints making too many mistakes and poor decisions to convert their territorial domination into points.
Myler and Kockott traded further kicks before Castres' South African scrum-half opened some breathing space with another kick eight minutes from time.
That set up a thrilling climax as Northampton threw everything into salvaging a winning try, yet despite sustained pressure deep inside Castres territory, Saints came up short.
Castres move on to take on Leinster in Dublin next week.
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|European Rugby Champions Cup|
|Friday 17th October|
|European Rugby Champions Cup|
|19:45||Harlequins vs Castres|
|Saturday 18th October|
|13:00||Sale vs Munster|
|15:15||Saracens vs Clermont Auvergne|
|19:45||Leicester vs Ulster|
|15:15||Glasgow vs Bath|
|17:15||Racing Metro 92 vs Northampton|
|Sunday 19th October|
|17:15||Leinster vs Wasps|
|15:15||Toulon vs Scarlets|
|13:00||Toulouse vs Montpellier|
|13:00||Ospreys vs Benetton Treviso|
|Friday 24th October|
|19:45||Munster vs Saracens|
|Saturday 25th October|
|13:00||Ulster vs Toulon|
|19:45||Scarlets vs Leicester|
|15:15||Bath vs Toulouse|
|17:15||Montpellier vs Glasgow|
|17:15||Northampton vs Ospreys|
|Sunday 26th October|
|15:15||Clermont Auvergne vs Sale|
|14:00||Castres vs Leinster|
|17:15||Wasps vs Harlequins|
|17:15||Benetton Treviso vs Racing Metro 92|
|Saturday 6th December|
|TBC||Munster vs Clermont Auvergne|
|TBC||Sale vs Saracens|
|TBC||Castres vs Wasps|
|TBC||Harlequins vs Leinster|
|TBC||Ulster vs Scarlets|
Read the thoughts and opinions of Phil Edwards with skysports.com