Du Toit gets ’Bok callup
Uncapped Sharks lock Pieter-Steph du Toit has been added to the South Africa squad to face Australia and New Zealand in their final two Rugby Championship Tests. Du Toit, who can also play as a flank, was drafted into the squad by coach Heyneke Meyer along with Stormers center Juan de Jongh. Scrumhalf Fourie du Preez also returns from club duty in Japan in a move that was always planned. The 21-year-old Du Toit was part of the Springbok squad in June, but had to withdraw because of a sternum injury. He has completed his rehabilitation and featured in the last two domestic Currie Cup matches for the Sharks. South Africa face Australia in Cape Town on Saturday, before welcoming New Zealand to Ellis Park in Johannesburg on Oct. 5.
Toulon go top in France
Toulon went to the French Top 14 summit on Saturday after an 18-12 win over Bayonne, which saw All Blacks lock Ali Williams mark his debut with a yellow card for stamping. Toulon lead Montpellier by one point, while Toulouse continued their winning home form with a welcome bonus-point 26-9 victory over defending champions Castres. It was Toulouse’s fourth victory this season at home, along with three away losses, and took the 19-time former champions onto 21 points, alongside Montpellier. Racing Metro are fourth, a point behind Montpellier and Toulouse, thanks to a 26-19 home win over Bordeaux-Begles. In Friday’s game, scrumhalf Jonathan Pelissie scored 31 points as Montpellier routed Clermont 43-3 in a bonus-point victory.
Sampdoria salvage draw
Sampdoria twice came from behind in the dying moments to rescue a 2-2 draw at Cagliari, while Chievo Verona recovered from an early setback to win their first Serie A game of the season 2-1 at home to Udinese on Saturday. Livorno missed the chance to catch the league leaders after a battling goalless draw at Genoa left the promoted side sixth, level on seven points with Juventus, Fiorentina and Inter, who are all to play today when pacesetters Napoli visit AC Milan. Fabio Liverani’s Genoa moved up a place to 13th with four points after a scrappy affair with few chances. The last-gasp draw earned by Delio Rossi’s Sampdoria thanks to Lorenzo De Silvestri’s added-time strike left them fourth from bottom on two points, while Cagliari stayed ninth with five. Chievo leapt out of the bottom three up to 13th place after their win, which put them level with Udinese on four points.
Marseille trail Monaco
Marseille’s disappointing week ended in a 0-0 draw at Bastia on Saturday, leaving them two points behind leaders Monaco, who were to travel to Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) yesterday. Meanwhile, Rennes continued their fine form, with just one defeat from six matches, as Foued Kadir’s double inspired them to a 2-0 home win over Fabrizio Ravanelli’s winless Ajaccio and moved the Brittany side level with Marseille and PSG on 11 points. Second-placed Saint-Etienne’s 2-1 home defeat against Toulouse on Friday kept them on 12 points, while Marseille stay in fourth, behind PSG on goal difference. Bastia retain their place on eight points, five behind Claudio Ranieri’s Cote d’Azur outfit. Elsewhere, Montpellier threw away a 2-0 advantage as they were held to a 2-2 draw at French Cup finalists Evian that leaves both clubs camped in the lower half. Reims battled to a 1-1 draw against Guingamp and Lille took advantage of a Nolan Roux brace to see off Sochaux 2-0 away.