Clermont off the mark in final repeat against Toulon

Clermont Auvergne got off the mark in Top 14 by triumphing in a repeat of last season's final, defeating Toulon 21-16 at Stade Marcel-Michelin.

The reigning champions began their defence of the title with a disappointing defeat to Bordeaux-Begles on the opening weekend and they had to come from behind to pick up their first points of the campaign.

Chris Ashton's strong start to life in France saw him score the opening try - his second in as many matches - in the 18th minute.

Fabien Galthie's side were unable to retain their lead after Romain Taofifenua and Ma'a Nonu were sent to the sin bin, Alivereti Raka touching down on the stroke of half-time to make the most of the two-man advantage.

Damian Penaud crossed after Toulon were restored to their full complement, and the visitors were unable to respond despite Clermont's Peceli Yato being shown a yellow card with 19 minutes remaining.

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