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Le 11 août 2014
Montpellier’s preparation for the new season looking at the results was not brilliant, two loses and one win in their pre-season games. The second lose was on Saturday night against London Irish, in the Legions Challenge Cup played in Grenoble which Montpellier were the inaugural holders last season. For reasons unknown, Montpellier seemed to be present in body but certainly not in mind, the Irish are not to be denied their success but they were helped by some sloppy play from the Montpellier boys who looked like they were still in holiday mode with only 7 days to go before the first clash of the new TOP 14 season against Racing Metro in our newly named L’Atrad Stadium.
The defence was poor and far too many mistakes were made, but these are matches of preparation for the real thing, so not all is revealed, but there will have to be some hard work produced this week to make up for the lack of effort and concentration which was revealed on Saturday evening.
London Irish opened the scoring with a try from Treviranus converted by Geraghty 0-7, but Montpellier replied quickly, another well taken try from the young Enzo Selponi once again covering for FTD who is only allowed 19 MINS of play per pre season game or it will count in his quota of 34 games as he is now in the 30 elite players who have restricted game time, this also includes Nico Mass and Fulgence Ouedraogo, not an easy time to prepare for these three players.
Just before half time Short added the first of his two tries for the Irish and at the break for lemons the Irish led 7-12.
The second half both sides changed more or less their teams to give everybody a run out, there was an improvement by Montpellier but still gaping holes appeared in the defence and several line outs were lost, only some good final tackling stopped the Irish from scoring more, they however managed two more tries through Short and Rouse both converted by Dorrian, Montpellier replied with tries from Nagusa and Ebersohm both converted by Paillaugue, Montpellier did mount a massive challenge in the last 10 mins. but it was never going to be enough and Irish came out worthy winners. The final score was London Irish 26 Montpellier 21. 
The real season starts next weekend, hard work and more hard work will be the order of the day, this coming week, another season is starting where points will be desperately hard to earn, all matches will have to be won at home and some away if Montpellier want to figure with the elite, no doubt coach Fabien Galthie will have his very unique way of preparing his boys with next Saturdays clash against Racing Metro, but this week will not be easily it never is after a lose, plus its the week before the season starts!!!
Steve Whittell.