Castres Olympique (French pronunciation: [kastʁ ɔlɛ̃pik], CAST-(r)) is a French rugby union club located in the Occitanian city of Castres and is currently competing in the top level of the French league system.

Castres Olympique
Full nameCastres Olympique
Founded1906; 118 years ago (1906)
LocationCastres, France
Ground(s)Stade Pierre-Fabre (Capacity: 12,500)
PresidentPierre-Yves Revol
Coach(es)Jeremy Davidson
Captain(s)Mathieu Babillot
League(s)Top 14
2023–247th
1st kit
2nd kit
Official website
castres-olympique.com

Founded in 1898, the club took its current name in 1906. They play at the Stade Pierre-Fabre, which is one of the smallest in Top 14 with a capacity of 12,500. The team wear blue and white kits.

The team won five French top-division championships in 1949, 1950, 1993 (in a match decided by an irregular try accorded by the referee),[1] 2013, and 2018 as well as one Coupe de France in 1948.

History

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In 1898 several alumni of Castres' municipal college met in a city centre bar and decided to create a team allowing them to play their favourite sport, rugby union. For the first few years this team was part of a multisport club until 1906. Unhappy with the dominating position cycling had within the club, the members of the rugby section decided to leave and create a club of their own, solely dedicated to their sport. It was decided that this club would be named Castres Olympique and its colours would be changed from yellow and black to its current blue, white and grey.

The new club reached the top flight after only 15 years of existence and has remained there ever since, bar for a couple of years during the 80s when the club was in the then Section B of the 1st division. The club has never left the 1st division since 1921.

For a while Castres Olympique would experience mixed fortunes until 1948 when they reached and won their first Coupe de France. The prestigious championship would follow a year later, and again in 1950.

From the 1960s the club would experience a stream of mediocre seasons and steady decline until Pierre Fabre, the founder of a local pharmaceutical company, decided to take over the club and restore it to its former relative glory in 1988.

In 1993, Castres play the final of the 1993 French Rugby Union Championship against Grenoble, a team who was nicknamed "the mammoths", because of its incredibly physical forward pack, coached by the former french national team manager Jacques Fouroux. Castres won its third national title 14–11, in a controversial match. Indeed a try of Olivier Brouzet is denied to Grenoble[2] and the decisive try by Gary Whetton was awarded by the referee, Daniel Salles, when in fact the defender Franck Hueber from Grenoble touched down the ball first in his try zone. This error gave the title to Castres. [3] Salles admitted the error 13 years later[4] [5]

Jacques Fouroux, being already suspicious before the match of the referee, saw in this outcome a conspiracy of his ennemies from inside the rugby union french Federation [6] [7]

The club reached the final again in 1995 losing 31–16 to Stade Toulousain.

Castres won the 2012–13 French Rugby Union Championship beating Toulon 19–14 in the final.[8]

The team's owner, Pierre Fabre, the founder of Laboratoires Pierre Fabre, died on 20 July 2013.[9] Castres home stadium, previously known as Stade Pierre-Antoine, was renamed in his memory during ceremonies in conjunction with Castres match with Montpellier on 9 September 2017.[10]

Castres won the 2017–18 French Rugby Union Championship beating Montpellier 29–13 in the final.

After finishing first in the 2021-2022 Top 14, Castres played a semi-final against the Stade Toulousain of Antoine Dupont and Romain Ntamack, beating them 24-18. The final is a rematch of 2018, but this time, Montpellier win 29-10.

Honours

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Finals results

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French championship

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Date Winners Runners-up Score Venue Spectators
22 May 1949 Castres Olympique Stade Montois 14–3 1 Stade des Ponts Jumeaux, Toulouse 23,000
16 April 1950 Castres Olympique Racing Club de France 11–8 Stade des Ponts Jumeaux, Toulouse 25,000
5 June 1993 Castres Olympique FC Grenoble 14–11 Parc des Princes, Paris 48,000
6 May 1995 Stade Toulousain Castres Olympique 31–16 Parc des Princes, Paris 48,615
1 June 2013 Castres Olympique RC Toulon 19–14 Stade de France, Saint-Denis 80,033
31 May 2014 RC Toulon Castres Olympique 18–10 Stade de France, Saint-Denis 80,174
2 June 2018 Castres Olympique Montpellier 29–13 Stade de France, Saint-Denis 78,441
24 June 2022 Montpellier Castres Olympique 29–10 Stade de France, Saint-Denis 78,245

Current standings

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2023–24 Top 14 Table
Pos Team Pld W D L PF PA PD TF TA TB LB Pts Qualification
1 Toulouse (Q) 26 16 1 9 765 592 +173 103 72 7 3 76 Playoffs and Qualification for 2024–25 European Rugby Champions Cup
2 Stade Français (Q) 26 17 1 8 539 511 +28 57 49 4 1 75
3 Bordeaux Bègles (Q) 26 15 0 11 677 558 +119 80 66 5 4 69
4 Toulon (Q) 26 15 0 11 704 519 +185 72 58 5 4 69
5 La Rochelle (Q) 26 13 1 12 595 496 +99 69 49 5 7 66
6 Racing 92 (Q) 26 13 0 13 622 546 +76 79 56 5 5 62
7 Castres 26 13 0 13 643 642 +1 69 77 4 6 62 Qualification for 2024–25 European Rugby Champions Cup
8 Clermont 26 12 2 12 621 671 −50 74 78 6 3 61
9 Pau 26 13 0 13 630 609 +21 68 72 3 5 60 Qualification for 2024–25 European Rugby Challenge Cup
10 Perpignan 26 13 0 13 634 701 −67 80 85 5 1 58
11 Lyon 26 12 0 14 630 754 −124 72 90 5 2 55
12 Bayonne 26 11 0 15 572 669 −97 65 77 2 6 52
13 Montpellier (Q) 26 9 0 17 542 655 −113 61 79 1 7 44 Qualification for Relegation play-off
14 Oyonnax (R) 26 7 1 18 539 790 −251 58 99 0 4 34 Relegation to Pro D2
Updated to match(es) played on 18 May 2024. Source: Top 14
(Q) Qualified for the playoffs; (R) Relegated


Current squad

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The Castres squad for the 2023–24 season is:[11][12]

Note: Flags indicate national union under World Rugby eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-World Rugby nationality.

Player Position Union
Gaëtan Barlot Hooker   France
Pierre Colonna Hooker   France
Loris Zarantonello Hooker   France
Aurelien Azar Prop   France
Wayan de Benedittis Prop   France
Levan Chilachava Prop   Georgia
Lois Guerois-Galisson Prop   France
Wilfrid Hounkpatin Prop   France
Antoine Tichit Prop   France
Matt Tierney Prop   Canada
Quentin Walcker Prop   France
Gauthier Maravai Lock   France
Leone Nakarawa Lock   Fiji
Ryno Pieterse Lock   South Africa
Tom Staniforth Lock   Australia
Florent Vanverberghe Lock   France
Mathieu Babillot Back row   France
Tyler Ardron Back row   Canada
Baptiste Cope Back row   France
Nick Champion de Crespigny Back row   New Zealand
Baptiste Delaporte Back row   France
Abraham Papali'i Back row   New Zealand
Yann Peysson Back row   France
Josaia Raisuqe Back row   Fiji
Player Position Union
Santiago Arata Scrum-half   Uruguay
Gauthier Doubrere Scrum-half   France
Jérémy Fernandez Scrum-half   France
Louis Le Bruin Fly-half   France
Pierre Popelin Fly-half   France
Vilimoni Botitu Centre   Fiji
Adrea Cocagi Centre   Fiji
Jack Goodhue Centre   New Zealand
Adrien Séguret Centre   France
Antoine Zeghdar Centre   France
Antoine Bouzerand Wing   France
Nathanaël Hulleu Wing   France
Martin Laveau Wing   France
Filipo Nakosi Wing   Fiji
Osea Waqaninavatu Wing   Fiji
Theo Chabouni Fullback   France
Julien Dumora Fullback   France
Geoffrey Palis Fullback   France

Espoirs squad

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Note: Flags indicate national union under World Rugby eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-World Rugby nationality.

Player Position Union
Alexey Konnov Lock   Russia
Hugo Lopes Lock   France
Romain Macurdy Lock   France
Adrien Tafanel Lock   France
Feibyan Cornell Tukino Back row   New Zealand
Dimitri Dronov Back row   Russia
Remi Loop Back row   Belgium
Player Position Union
Simon Benoist Scrum-half   France
Louison Gras Fly-half   France
Daniel Catanzaro Centre   Spain
Joris Dupont Centre   France
Crimson Tukino Centre   New Zealand
Sacha Palchine Fullback   France

Notable former players

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See also

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References

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  1. ^ "Gerry Thornley: Grenoble's Jackman fast becoming one of top Irish coaches". irishtimes. April 12, 2016. Retrieved March 25, 2019.
  2. ^ "Combien de fois Bayonne s'est imposé dans la capitale ?". www.rugbyrama.fr. Midi olympique. 3 January 2013. Retrieved 21 August 2013.
  3. ^ "MICHEL RINGEVAL (PART 2): " AU BOUT D'UN QUART D'HEURE, J'AI COMPRIS QU'ON NE GAGNERAIT PAS"". lesportdauphinois.com. November 19, 2016. Archived from the original on February 12, 2019. Retrieved March 25, 2019.
  4. ^ "Daniel Salles à propos de Castres-Grenoble en 1993 : " Je me suis trompé "". sudouest. 1 June 2013. Retrieved 24 October 2013.
  5. ^ "Parc des Princes, Paris, 5 Juin 1993". LNR. 28 December 2004. Retrieved 24 October 2012.
  6. ^ Salviac, Pierre (9 September 2015). Merci pour ces moments: 50 ans de grands reportages. Hachette Book. ISBN 9791093463247. Retrieved March 25, 2019.
  7. ^ "Top 14: Toulon-Castres, souviens-toi, il y a vingt ans..." www.lepoint.fr. June 1, 2013. Retrieved March 25, 2019.
  8. ^ "Castres et " la magie du rugby "". www.republicain-lorrain.fr. 3 June 2013. Retrieved 3 June 2013.
  9. ^ "Pierre Fabre, founder of pharmaceutical giant, dies". Agence France Presse. France 24. 2013-07-20. Archived from the original on 2013-07-23. Retrieved 2013-08-17.
  10. ^ "Castres : ce sera le Stade Pierre-Fabre" [Castres: it will be Stade Pierre-Fabre]. La Dépêche. 12 August 2017. Retrieved 25 November 2017.
  11. ^ "Effectif" (in French). Castres Olympique. 7 December 2023. Retrieved 7 December 2023.
  12. ^ "Castres squad for season 2023/2024". All Rugby. 7 December 2023. Retrieved 7 December 2023.
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