Saints slide to thumping loss in Perpignan

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The Independent Online

Northampton were brought back down to earth after last week's stunning Heineken Cup win against Munster when they were beaten 29-13 by French champions Perpignan at Stade Aimé Giral.

Perpignan, humbled by Italian side Treviso in their opening game, were dominant in the early stages and opened up a 10-0 lead after a penalty try. Chris Ashton's try and a penalty by Shane Geraghty reduced the deficit but Jean-Louis Marty went over just before half-time to put Perpignan 20-8 ahead at the interval.

Northampton prop Brian Mujati scored a try at the start of the second half to give the Saints hope but Perpignan regained control and stretched their lead with three Jérôme Porical penalties. Munster can go top of Group One today with a heavy win against Treviso.

*Newport-Gwent Dragons kept alive their Heineken Cup hopes with a 22-14 victory over Glasgow. Adam Jones, Luke Charteris and Martyn Thomas scored first-half tries for the Welsh side while John Beattie, in the first half, and Kevin Tkachuk, early in the second, scored for Glasgow.