Connacht win in France

Bayonne versus Connaught


A fine evening for Connacht has seen a very tight win for the men from the West.

In Pool 2’s European Challenge Cup late game, Connacht edged out Bayonne 29-27 thanks to two tries from Caoilan Blade to sit second in the standings, two points adrift of Exeter.

Bayonne managed three tries to Connacht’s two, both courtesy of Caoilan Blade, and both converted by Miah Nikora.

It was Nikora’s penalties that would ultimately give Connacht the edge.

However, the game was not to be decided until the closing minutes, when the second of Blade’s tries and Nikora’s conversion pushed Connacht ahead by two points in the 77th minute.

Things looked ominous for the Westerners early on as tries from Saimoni Vaka in the third-minute and another from centre Mathieu Ugalde gave Bayonne a 14-3 advantage.

However, Blade scored his first try of the night after a break by Darragh leader for the hosts to take a 17-16 advantage into the break.

Disaster struck two minites into the second half for Connacht as Pierre Sayerse scored Bayonne’s third try from close range.

Captain Loustalot converted and converted another penalty, but Connacht’s Nikora struck back with two penalties.

With five minutes left, Nikora kicked for the corner and a lineout maul led to Blade touching down for his and Connacht’s second try of the night.

Bayonne were behind for the first time and though they managed to force a late penalty, Ugalde sent it wide.

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