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Benetton Rugby will look to make it two European Rugby Challenge Cup wins in as many matches when they travel to face Agen at Stade Armandie on Friday night.
- Agen and Benetton Rugby have never met before, this will be the 10th Italian club Agen have played in the tournament.
- Agen have won 16 of 18 games against Italian sides, however, they did lose their most recent such fixture, a 38-30 defeat against Zebre Rugby Club last season.
- Benetton have a balanced record away from home in the Challenge Cup, winning four and losing four of eight. Their four defeats were by an average margin of 23 points.
- Despite their loss to Harlequins, Agen made more carries (175) and offloads (26) than any other side in Round 1. and Opeti Fonua made the most individual carries (23).
- Agen were the only side to have two players yellow carded in Round 1.
Bravo @BenettonRugby 👏
The Italians defeat @FCGrugby with Tommaso Allan the ⭐ man with 18 points in Treviso#ChallengeCupRugby https://t.co/wsmwutnzLT
— Challenge Cup (@ERChallengeCup) October 13, 2018
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An excellent second-half performance from Agen gave the French side a 20-19 victory at home against an in-form Benetton Rugby.
It was the Italian side, however, that got off to a flyer through two carbon-copy tries from Luca Bigi, with the hooker twice peeling off the back of penetrating mauls to cross and give Benetton a 12-0 lead.
Agen reduced the deficit through Antoine Miquel’s effort, following numerous phases off the scrum from the TOP14 side and was converted by Australian fly-half Jake McIntyre.
The Italian outfit were penalised at scrum just before the break and the penalty slotted by McIntyre gave Benetton a narrow 12-10 lead at half-time.
Fijian Ratuya Tavuyara scored soon after the second-half began with his effort converted by the Italian international Tommaso Allan.
Photo d'une victoire en coupe d'Europe ✊🔵⚪️#IciCEstAgen #SUABR pic.twitter.com/QXiEl4Ab6K
— SUA LG (@agen_rugby) October 19, 2018
But Agen fought themselves back into contention with a McIntyre penalty, followed by Yoan Tanga’s converted effort edging the French team ahead 20-19.
Benetton’s fly-half Allan has the opportunity to give his side the win late on but his penalty kick went wide of the posts and Agen held out for victory.
Agen travel to TOP14 rivals Grenoble in the next round of fixtures, while Benetton aim to bounce back at home to Harlequins.
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