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Tough start for new boys

Grenoble and Mont-de-Marsan on the road for first two fixtures

Last Updated: 07/07/12 7:56pm

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Top 14 new boys Grenoble and Mont-de-Marsan will both start their seasons with back-to-back away games.

Grenoble, who won the ProD2 title last season, will Bordeaux-Begles and Castres in the opening two fixtures before a first home encounter against Stade Francais in round three.

The fixture list has been less kind to Mont-de-Marsan, who overcame Pau in the play-off final, with a trip to Amlin Challenge Cup winners Biarritz followed by a clash with defending champions Toulouse. They will then entertain beaten Top 14 finalists Toulon in their opening home game over the weekend of August 31/September 1.

The season will kick-off on August 17 - barely 10 weeks after Toulouse toppled Toulon in the 2011/12 final - with Guy Noves' side taking on Castres in a repeat of the play-off semi-final.

Toulon will travel to troubled Perpignan, who are facing financial difficulties, Clermont will visit Bayonne, Agen welcome Racing Metro and Stade Francais entertain Montpellier.

Opening three weeks of the Top 14 season

Round 1:
August 17-18
Bayonne v Clermont Auvergne
Toulouse v Castres
Biarritz v Mont-de-Marsan
Agen v Racing Métro 92
Stade Francais v Montpellier
Perpignan v Toulon
Bordeaux-Bègles v Grenoble

Round 2:
August 24-25
Agen v Biarritz
Montpellier v Clermont Auvergne
Toulouse v Mont-de-Marsan
Castres v Grenoble
Racing Métro 92 v Toulon
Bayonne v Stade Francais
Bordeaux-Bègles v Perpignan

Round 3:
August 31-September 1
Castres v Bayonne
Biarritz v Toulouse
Grenoble v Stade Francais
Clermont Auvergne v Perpignan
Montpellier v Agen
Mont-de-Marsan v Toulon
Racing Métro 92 v Bordeaux-Bègles

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