Rory Kockott and Benjamin Urdapilleta inspired Castres Olympique to a gripping 34-30 victory over ASM Clermont Auvergne in the TOP 14 at the Stade Marcel-Michelin. 

Kockott picked up a try, with the scrum-half kicking a further five points and Urdapilleta racking up a match tally of 11 from the tee. 

Castres, who will face Harlequins and Munster Rugby in Pool B when this season’s Heineken Champions Cup gets underway in December, had to come from behind to overcome a Clermont side who crossed the whitewash three times. 

Tani Vili, Adrien Pelissie and JJ Hanrahan all went over for the hosts, who will take on Sale Sharks and Ulster Rugby in Pool A in this season’s Heineken Champions Cup, with fly-half Camille Lopez kicking 15 points. 

But Adrea Cocagi scored to add to Kockott’s first-half try for Castres, before Kevin Kornath crossed to snatch a late victory for the visitors, with Urdapilleta’s conversion sealing a dramatic victory.’ 

Meanwhile, last season’s European Rugby Challenge Cup winners Montpellier Hérault Rugby produced a convincing 39-17 win over CA Brive. 

Hooker Jeremie Maurouard picked up a brace of tries, with Gela Aprasidze, Geoffrey Doumayrou and Arthur Vincent also going over, and fly-half Louis Foursans tallying 14 points from the tee. Peniami Narisia, Sevanaia Galala and Vano Karkadze grabbed tries for Brive. 

Section Paloise picked up their first TOP 14 win of the season, edging out Lyon 21-17. Fly-half Antoine Hastoy was the sole provider of Pau’s points, slotting six penalties as well as a drop goal. 

Lyon counterpart Leo Berdeu notched four penalties, with Xavier Mignot scoring the game’s only try for the visitors. 

Elsewhere, USAP also secured their first TOP 14 win of the season, overcoming Biarritz Olympique in a 33-20 success. 

Winger Jean-Bernard Pujol crossed twice for USAP, in addition to a score from Tristan Tedder, who also slotted a drop goal. Full-back Melvyn Jaminet kicked all three conversions as well as a trio of penalties. 

John Dyer and Andy Cramond both got on the scoresheet with tries for Biarritz, with ex-Harlequins fly-half Brett Herron picking up 10 points from the tee.