Biarritz Olympique survived another scare against a 14-man Benetton Treviso to avenge their defeat in Italy to keep their Heineken Cup quarterfinal hopes alive with a much-needed victory at the Stade Aguilera.
The French side crossed for four tries to get a bonus point, but the Top 14 side made hard work of things against a Treviso side which played nearly 60 minutes with Francesco Minto shown a red card in the first half.
The Basque outfit had left themselves a lot to do on their home patch after the 30-26 defeat to Treviso in Italy last weekend and needed a bonus point victory to keep their qualification hopes from Pool Five alive
The Italians started where they left off from last weekend and adapted to the awful wind and rain by using their impressive forward pack to dominated the opening exchanges, with flyhalf Kris Burton slotting over the first penalty of the game after seven minutes.
Burton did exactly the same five minutes later to stretch Treviso's lead to 6-0 but the Italian's were soon down to 14-men after flank Minto was shown the red card for violent play at a ruck by Irish referee Peter Fitzgibbon on the 26th minute.
Despite Biarritz dominating most of the opening exchanges and being camped in the visitors half , the Italian side stretched their lead with another Burton two penalties towards before his opposite number Julien Peyrelongue made it 12-3 at half-time to Treviso.
After the break, Biarittz, playing with the wind, scored the game's first try when fullback Iain Balshaw gathered a kick by centre Damien Traille to cross in the left corner to claw the home side back into the contest.
Peyrelongue added the extras to make it 12-10 to Treviso before the French side started to make their one-man advantage pay and took the lead with a try by replacement scrumhalf Dane Haylett-Petty only minutes later.
The French side blew a number of try-scoring chances in the last quarter of the contest until flank Wenceslas Lauret crashed over to stretch the home side's lead with their third try converted by Peyrelongue.
Hooker Arnaud Heguy then crossed for the Basques fourth try for the all-important bonus point on the 80th minute to keep the French side in the mix for the knockout stages of the Heineken Cup.
Tries: Balshaw, Haylett-Petty, Lauret, Heguy
Cons: Peyrelongue 3
Pens: Burton 4
Biarritz Olympique: 15 Iain Balshaw, 14 Taku Ngwenya, 13 Marcelo Bosch, 12 Damien Traille, 11 Ilikena Bolakoro, 10 Julien Peyrelongue, 9 Yann Lesgourgues, 8 Imanol Harinordoquy, 7 Wenceslas Lauret, 6 Benoit Guyot, 5 Pelu Taele, 4 Manuel Carizza, 3 Francisco Gomez Kodela, 2 Arnaud Heguy, 1 Yvan Watremez.
Replacements: 16 Benoit August, 17 Sylvain Marconnet, 18 Thomas Lebrequier, 19 Jérôme Thion, 20 Jean-Baptiste Roidot, 21 Florian Faure, 22 Benoît Baby, 23 Dane Haylett-Petty.
Benetton Treviso: 15 Luke McLean, 14 Ludovico Nitoglia, 13 Alberto Sgarbi, 12 Andrea Pratichetti, 11 Tommaso Benvenuti, 10 Kristopher Burton, 9 Tobias Botes, 8 Robert Barbieri, 7 Alessandro Zanni, 6 Francesco Minto, 5 Cornelius van Zyl, 4 Antonio Pavanello, 3 Lorenzo Cittadini, 2 Enrico Ceccato, 1 Michele Rizzo.
Replacements: 16 Diego Vidal, 17 Ignacio Fernandez Rouyet, 18 Pedro di Santo, 19 Benjamin Vermaak , 20 Gonzalo Padrò, 21 Marco Filippucci, 22 Willem de Waal, 23 Edoardo Gori.
Referee: Peter Fitzgibbon
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