Oyonnax 15

Connacht 43

Connacht got their European Challenge Cup campaign off to the perfect start with a bonus point win against French Top14 side Oyonnax in the 30,000 seater Stade de Geneve in Switzerland. Buoyed on by a noisy travelling support Connacht ran in five tries in an exciting, attacking performance.

Leading 22 points to 15 at the break Connacht never looked like loosing this game despite a purple patch for the French side when they pegged back a 16 point deficit to bring it back to 19 points to 15 in Connacht’s favour with 35 minutes gone. From there on it was all Connacht though as Oyonnax failed to score for the remainder of the game.

Oyonnax opened the scoring with a penalty inside two minutes from out-half Christopher Ruiz. Connacht responded immediately with Matt Healy getting over for a try after 5 minutes and Cian Kelleher doing likewise a few minutes later. Connacht continued to apply the pressure and kicked to the corner after 20 minutes. From the resulting lineout Eoin McKeon got over for Connacht’s third try.

Oyonnax responded with their best period of the game with tries from centre Ulupano Seuteni and winger Axel Muller crossing to cut the gap to 19-15 after half an hour.

After the break Andrew kicked a straight forward penalty to keep the score board ticking over and the bonus point was secured when Matt Healy got over for his second try on 53 minutes. From there on Connacht defended resolutely to make sure Oyonnax had no opportunity to get back into the game.

With two minutes Darragh Leader got over in the corner for a well worked try – Connacht’s fifth of the evening. A perfect start to Kieran Keane and Connacht’s Challenge Cup campaign.

Connacht: Darragh Leader, Cian Kelleher (Rory Scholes 69), Eoin Griffin, Tom Farrell (Craig Ronaldson 58), Matt Healy, Andrew Deegan, Caolin Blade, Denis Coulson (Peter McCabe 76), Tom McCartney (Shane Delahunt 65), Finlay Bealham (Conor Carey 76), Ultan Dillane (Quinn Roux 65), James Cannon; Eoghan Masterson, Eoin McKeon, John Muldoon (James Connolly 70).
79
Darragh Leader
Try
75
Conor Carey
Finlay Bealham
75
Peter McCabe
Denis Coulson
Mickael Romera
Roimata Hansell-Pune
69
69
James Connolly
John Muldoon
68
Rory Scholes
Cian Kelleher
Thomas Laclayat
Irakli Mirtskhulava
66
64
Quinn Roux
Ultan Dillane
64
Shane Delahunt
Tom McCartney
61
Andrew Deegan
Penalty
Romain Gauthier
Valentin Ursache
61
57
Andrew Deegan
Penalty
Jeremy Scalese
Silvere Tian
57
57
Craig Ronaldson
Thomas Farrell
52
Andrew Deegan
Conversion
51
Matt Healy
Try
Guilhem Bourgois
Benjamin Geledan
51
Shay Kerry
Christian Njewel
51
Vincent Debaty
Giorgi Vepkhvadze
44
44
Andrew Deegan
Penalty
Irakli Mirtskhulava
Thomas Laclayat
40
38
Andrew Deegan
Penalty
Thomas Laclayat
Irakli Mirtskhulava
32
Maurie Fa'asavalu
Shay Kerry
30
Axel Muler
Try
30
Julien Audy
Conversion
26
Silvere Tian
Try
25
24
Andrew Deegan
Conversion
22
Eoin McKeon
Try
Anthony Fuertes
Christopher Ruiz
21
Shay Kerry
Maurie Fa'asavalu
21
11
Cian Kelleher
Try
4
Andrew Deegan
Conversion
3
Matt Healy
Try
Christopher Ruiz
Penalty
2
Oyonnax Connacht
2
5
Tries
241
337
Metres
32
40
Carries
12
23
Defenders Beaten
3
8
Clean Breaks
118
142
Passes
6
12
Offloads
10
10
Turnovers Conceeded