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Stade up to second in French Top 14

PARIS--Stade Francais moved up to second in the French Top 14 with an ultimately commanding 21-6 win over Grenoble on Friday.

Stade maintained their watertight record this season at their Jean-Bouin ground to move to within one point of leaders Clermont, who host Biarritz on Saturday.

Gonzalo Quesada's side, runaway 23-0 winners over European champions Toulon before the break for European Cup action, reduced Grenoble to bit-part players, the visitors only managing a brace of penalties from scrum-half James Hart.

Stade however only led 8-3 at the break thanks to a corner try from Geoffrey Doumayrou on 25 minutes.

The Parisian outfit had to wait until the 69th minute for their second try from South African fly-half Meyer Bosman, with his compatriot Morne Steyn converting.

Steyn added three penalties in a game in which Stade fluffed a number of eye-catching scoring opportunities.

“Mission accomplished,” reflected Quesada.

“We missed a few chances at the end. We knew Grenoble would be tough to beat, so we're satisfied to have had control of the ball but we're a little disappointed not to have taken the bonus point.”

On Saturday both big-spending Racing-Metro and Perpignan face tough away matches this weekend at Brive.

Aside from leaders clermont in the Basque Country to take on Biarritz Toulon host Montpellier, who are hanging onto that crucial sixth spot at the moment and Toulouse welcome Bordeaux-Begles.

Down at the bottom, Oyonnax host Bayonne in a vital relegation clash.

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Grenoble's fullback Fabien Gengenbacher, of France, center, vies with Stade Francais's Herman Bosman, left, during the French Top 14 rugby union match between Paris and Grenoble at the Jean Bouin stadium in Paris on Friday, Dec. 20. (AFP)

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