Masterson led the squad out in France tonight, his first taste of captaining the side, as they faced Top 14 side Castres Olympique. The game, which is part of the Challenge Vaquerin, kicked off at 8pm (7pm GMT) at Saint-Affrique.

Castres were the first to get over the line with a try from Martial. A missed conversion left the home side 5-0 up on the 6’ mark. The home side broke through on the 21’ minute to add a converted try leaving the score 12-0.

Connacht broke through the home side’s defense in the second half and Rodney Ah You crashed across the line to score Connacht’s first try. Ronaldson stepped up to take the conversion but wasn’t on target.

Castres’ Palis crossed the line in the 73’ to score a try which they then converted to secure the win.

Speaking after the match Head Coach Pat Lam said:

“I’m pretty pleased with the boys’ performance. Castres are getting ready for their competition next week and I said before the game that I was keen for the boys to improve on last week and we certainly got that.

“It was a pretty physical game. There were three tries and, if there was a TMO, they were pretty 50/50 but at the end of the day when we look at the performance it was a massive step-up from last week.

“Some guys really stepped up to the plate and we’ve got a tough job to make our selection for next week. It was great to get the boys who went away on the Emerging tour back playing and again, a lot of them were able to get rid of a bit of rust and build nicely. So, all in all, we’re pretty pleased. I think the main thing is that we are pleased that we had a much better performance than last week.”

Half Time: Castres 12 – 0 Connacht

Full Time: Castres 19 – 5 Connacht

Connacht scorers: Rodney Ah You (52” Try)

Castres scorers: Tries: Martial, Palis, Vialelle

Pat Lam’s men will play Munster at Thomond Park next Friday, August 21st.

Connacht: 15 – 9: Darragh Leader, Tiernan O’Halloran, Rory Parata, Bundee Aki, Danie Poolman, Shane O’Leary, John Cooney

 1 – 8: Finlay Bealham, Dave Heffernan, Rodney Ah You, Ben Marshall, Danny Qualter, Eoin McKeon, Nepia Fox-Matamua, Eoghan Masterson (c)

Castres 1 – 15: Palis, Smith, Wulf, Sivivatu, Martial, Urdapilleta, Seron, Babillot, A.Tulou, Diarra, Capo Ortega (cap), Samson, Martinez, Mach, Forestier.

 

 

Related

Squad Update – Marmion ruled out until February