CHRIS Ashton had his blushes saved by a moment of individual brilliance from Toulon's new France international Anthony Belleau after his howler almost gifted Bath a notable away win in the Champions Cup.

Playing at full-back for the French giants, the former England wing, a Champions Cup winner in the last two seasons with Saracens, gifted the English side a try in the 62nd minute with a complete miskick from behind his posts as he attempted to clear his lines.

The ball came off the side of his boot and bounced on the line and allowed Jonathan Joseph to snap up the ball, and the sucker try. Rhys Priestland's conversion made it 20-15 and Bath were back in control of the game.

But Belleau, a 72nd-minute replacement for the injured Francois Trinh-Duc, put his side back in front with a kick-and-chase try from five metres out that changed the face of the game a mere three minutes after coming on, teeing his men up for a 24-20 win.

Bath had the better of the first half thanks to two penalties from Priestland's boot and a fabulous try from Anthony Watson that owed everything to the approach work of former Wales wing Aled Brew. Having raced into a 10-point lead in the opening 14 minutes, Bath were then hit with a try from Ma'a Nonu five minutes from the break.

Trin-Duc added the extras, but a second Priestland penalty on the stroke of half-time gave the visitors' a 13-7 lead. Toulon turned up the heat in the second half and two cruel blows saw Bath on the back foot.

They lost Wales and British & Irish Lions No 8 Taulupe Faletau to an injury in the 48th minute, and then had scrum half Chris Cook sent to the sin-bin for knocking the ball out of the hands of Duane Vermeulen two minutes later. From the resulting penalty scrum five metres out Toulon scored to hit the front.

Former All Blacks scrum half Alby Mathewson fed the scrum, picked up and zipped over the line for a try that Trinh Duc converted to make it 14-13 with 30 minutes left to play.

Bath kept on using their back line and a brilliant kick by Watson forced Toulon to defend a five metre line-out. They won the ball, fed Ashton, but his sliced kick allowed Bath to profit.

Joseph's try moved them six points clear, but that lead was halved five minutes later when Trinh Duc kicked a penalty for hands at the breakdown. Then came Belleau's moment of magic to regain the lead four minutes from time.

Bath won a scrum penalty in the dying moments, their forward drive from the resulting line-out in the home 22 reached the posts, but they were denied by a turn over from Vermeulen.

That gave Toulon the win and allowed them to move three points clear of Bath at the top of Pool 5, with the Scarlets two more behind in third place.