Ex-Baby Bok Liebenberg scores but La Rochelle miss out on top spot

Paris (AFP) –

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Former South Africa under-20 back-rower Wiaan Liebenberg opened his account for the season but La Rochelle failed to move to the summit of the French Top 14 despite a 35-24 win at Pau on Sunday.

The visitors missed out on the chance to leap-frog leaders Clermont as they left Stade du Hameau without a bonus point.

Liebenberg, who won the Junior World Championship in 2012, and Leo Aouf crossed along with succesful shots at goal from Jules Plisson as the away side led 20-0 after a quarter of an hour.

Jules Favre and Zeno Kieft scored before the break which would have given them a three-try or more cushion over Pau to take top spot but the hosts' second half comeback thwarted their hopes.

Hugo Bonneval went over before replacement hooker Lucas Rey did so twice to leave La Rochelle in second place.

Earlier, Agen sacked coach Christophe Laussucq after Saturday's 71-5 defeat at Bordeaux-Begles described by club president Jean-Francois Fonteneau as "intolerable".

Later Sunday, 14-time champions Stade Francais host record 20-time winners Toulouse in French rugby's Classico.