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Toulouse lose Top 14 thriller despite Dupont return

Quick hands: <a class="link " href="https://sports.yahoo.com/soccer/teams/toulouse/" data-i13n="sec:content-canvas;subsec:anchor_text;elm:context_link" data-ylk="slk:Toulouse;sec:content-canvas;subsec:anchor_text;elm:context_link;itc:0">Toulouse</a>'s Antoine Dupont (L) passes the ball during the match against Bordeaux Begles (ROMAIN PERROCHEAU)
Quick hands: Toulouse's Antoine Dupont (L) passes the ball during the match against Bordeaux Begles (ROMAIN PERROCHEAU)

Toulouse welcomed back star scrum-half Antoine Dupont on Sunday but the French champions still slipped to a roller-coaster 31-28 defeat to Bordeaux in the Top 14.

Dupont, fresh from his foray into Sevens rugby ahead of the Paris Olympics, started on the bench but was summoned into action after just five minutes when fly-half Thomas Ramos picked up a rib injury.

However, the 27-year-old was helpless as Toulouse trailed 24-7 at the interval.

"I like it when people explain to me that he's the best nine in the world but he's not bad at number 10 either," said Toulouse coach Ugo Mola of Dupont.

"He brought us energy even if in the first half, he made one or two decisions not up to what he is capable of doing. He did much better in the second half."

Toulouse hit back to lead 28-24 before Bordeaux flanker Pierre Bochaton grabbed his team's fifth try of the night 10 minutes from time to secure victory.

Bordeaux's other tries all came in the opening period through centre Yoram Moefana, No.8 Tevita Tatafu, winger Damian Penaud and full-back Romain Buros.

English flanker Jack Willis, New Zealand centre Pita Ahki and a double from winger Matthis Lebel in three second-half minutes were Toulouse's try scorers.

Despite the loss, Toulouse remain second in the Top 14 table, three points behind Stade Francais while Bordeaux are up to third.

dj/jc