Poland have won two from two and top the Rugby Europe Trophy 2021/22 standings after they saw off Germany in a hard fought encounter on Saturday.
Both sides went into the clash at the Narodowy Stadion Rugby in Gdynia with one win from one and this match between two in-form sides did not disappoint.
The home side Poland took the lead early on when stand-off Wojciech Piotrowicz kicked a penalty before Germany full-back Eduardo Stella kicked three points himself.
Stella then kicked another penalty and when second-row Rayan Hassan went over for a try converted by the number 15, Germany led 13-3 after 33 minutes.
That was the way things stood at half-time, but Piotrowicz was on target with three more penalties and Stella one as the hour mark approached and it was excitingly poised at 16-12.
And three more Piotrowicz penalties, in the 63rd, 68th and 76th minutes edged Poland home 21-16.
Having lost two previous matches, Lithuania got things up and running in the same competition with a 28-20 triumph away in Switzerland.
It puts them fourth in the table with the Swiss bottom, but they have only had one match so far.
In the Women's Trophy, Czechia moved to top spot with 10 points from their three games after defeating Switzerland 0-27.
Sweden still hold the advantage in the group with a 100% record and a game in hand against the Swiss.
Croatia are top of Rugby Europe Conference 1 South for 2021/22 with 10 points from 10 after they went to Cyprus and won 29-8 on Saturday.
Back-row Ivo Peric, winger Nikola Pavlovic (2), centre Marko Grcic and second-row Alexander Bibic were the try scorers for the visitors to the Stelios Kyriakides Stadium in Paphos.
Malta are second with nine points from a possible 10 after they edged to a 15-13 home win over Israel.
Elsewhere on Saturday, Portugal showed their continuing improvement by giving Japan a very good run for their money in a Test match.
The hosts gave as good as they got before the Japanese team’s experience saw them home 38-25 in the Estádio Municipal Cidade De Coimbra in Coimbra and Belgium gave a good account of themselves at home to Canada in the Stade Nelson Mandela in Brussels before losing out 24-0.
Georgia travelled to Bordeaux where they took on France and gave a good account of themselves, holding their hosts for the first 20 minutes, two sin bins gave France the momentum and went on to record a 41-15 win.
By Gary Heatly
Images: Kevin Dodd