Clermont move clear
The Auvergne secure spot in the play-off semi-finals
Last Updated: 21/04/12 6:46am
Clermont have moved clear at the top of the Top 14 standings following a convincing 22-9 win over Montpellier at the Stade Marcel Michelin.
The Auvergne had started the match in a share of pole position with Toulouse, however they needed a late try from Ti'i Paulo to make sure of a place in the play-off semi-finals.
Clermont, the Heineken Cup semi-finalists, had only led 6-3 at the break after a nervy first half - with Brock James landing a penalty and a drop-goal, while Martin Bustos Moyano was on target for the visitors.
Santiago Fernandez kicked Montpellier level in the second half while James was in the sin-bin.
And although Morgan Parra landed two penalties to restore Clermont's advantage, Fernandez slotted over his second successful kick to keep Montpellier in the hunt.
However Parra added his third penalty and then converted after replacement hooker Ti'i Paulo barrelled over in the 70th minute to put Clermont clear.