Home European Champions Cup Racing 92 with a winning start

Racing 92 with a winning start

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Racing 92 opened their European Champions Cup account with a 22-18 victory over Leicester at Stade Yves du Manoir on Saturday.

Tries from Leone Nakarawa, Dimitri Szarzewski and Teddy Thomas proved too much for Leicester who scored through tries from Luke Hamilton and Jonny May.

Leicester took an early lead when Hamilton bashed over showing good support play after Nick Malouf did exceptionally well to tidy up a loose pass and break.

The hosts responded in the 18th minute from a five metre attacking scrum. The ball was switched to the right and after a few phases Nakarawa showed excellent skills in getting the hands free to dot down between two defenders.

George Ford restored the visitors’ lead but Racing were keen to assert their dominance and grabbed their second try soon afterwards. Once again it was good work from Nakarawa who broke off the back of the maul and passed inside to Baptiste Chozenoux who offloaded timeously for the on-running Szarzewski who was not going to be stopped from that sort of distance.

Another Nakarawa offload allowed Wenceslas Lauret to break before being brought down. However, from the next phase the ball was switched out wide for Thomas who had plenty of space on the overlap to dive over and give the hosts a 19-10 lead.

Virimi Vakatawa was then yellow-carded and the visitors capitalised on their numerical advantage from the resulting penalty when Jonny May made it a four-point deficit after a brilliantly executed set piece from Leicester with Toomua delivering the pinpoint pass as Racing 92 took a 19-15 lead in to the interval.

The first points of the second-half came on the 60-minute mark when Maxime Machenaud slotted the penalty after Leicester were penalised at the breakdown to extend the home side’s lead to 22-15.

Ford responded for the visitors with five minutes to go slotting a penalty after Racing were penalised for a dangerous tackle just outside the 22 but Racing 92 held on for a 22-18 win.

The scorers:

For Racing 92:
Tries: Nakarawa, Szarzewski, Thomas
Cons: Iribaren 2
Pen: Machenaud
Yellow Card: Vakatawa

For Leicester:
Tries: Hamilton, May
Con: Ford
Pens: Ford 2

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