Home European Challenge Cup Challenge Cup Quarter Finals decided

Challenge Cup Quarter Finals decided


Cardiff Blues and Toulouse ended their Challenge Cup pool campaigns with wins but it is only the Blues who progress from Pool 2.

In Pool 5 Brive have qualified at the expense of Worcester while in Pool 4 Stade Français joined Edinburgh in making it into the last eight.

Lyon 18-21 Cardiff Blues

Cardiff Blues made it five wins from six games in the pool stages after they beat Lyon 21-18 at Matmut Stadium de Gerland on Saturday.

Despite finishing top of their pool, the Welsh region will however be on the road in the quarter-finals due to other sides’ superb records.

Lloyd Williams, a penalty try and Tomos Williams provided the five-pointers for Cardiff, while Jarrod Evans slotted four points off the tee.

Lyon, who finish in fourth place, scored tries through Dylan Cretin and Pierre-Louis Barassi as their campaign ended in a fourth defeat.

The scorers:

For Lyon:
Tries: Cretin, Barassi
Con: Beauxis
Pens: Beauxis 2
Yellow Cards: Cotte, Barassi

For Cardiff Blues:
Tries: L Williams, Penalty try, T Williams
Cons: Evans 2
Yellow Card: Evans


Toulouse 28-21 Sale Sharks

Sale had their hopes of quarter-final qualification ended at the hands of Toulouse, who won 28-21 at Stade Ernest Wallon on Saturday.

A late try from replacement Semi Kunatani saw the French side to victory, which was their second of the Challenge Cup pool campaign.

Maks van Dyk, David Roumieu and Julian Marchand were their other scorers in the bonus-point win that sees them finish in second.

Marland Yarde, Luke James and Josh Beaumont crossed for the Sharks as they finish in third position, with this their third pool defeat.

The scorers:

For Toulouse:
Tries: Van Dyk, Roumieu, Marchant, Kunatani
Cons: Ntamack 3, Bezy
Yellow Cards: Tolofua

For Sale:
Tries: Yarde, L James, Beaumont
Cons: Addison 3


Brive 33-7 Worcester Warriors

Brive secured a place in the last eight of the Challenge Cup after claiming a bonus-point 33-7 victory over Worcester Warriors in Tulle.

The rescheduled game saw the match moved to Stade Alexandre Cueuille but it didn’t affect the Brive mindset as they ran in five tries.

Sisa Koyamaibole scored a brace while Benito Masilevu,  Dominiko Waqaniborutu and Seremaia Burotu also crossed in the big win.

Worcester subsequently miss out on the knockout stages and finish third in Pool 5, with Tom Howe claiming their only try of the game.

The scorers:

For Brive:
Tries: Koyamaibole 2, Masilevu, Waqaniborutu, Burotu
Cons: Germain 4

For Worcester:
Try: Howe
Con: Pennell
Yellow Cards: Cox, Kerrod


Stade Francais 17-10 Edinburgh

Stade Français sealed a spot in the Challenge Cup knockouts as a best runner-up after beating Edinburgh 17-10 at Stade Jean Bouin.

The hosts finished one point above London Irish in the pool and eight behind eventual Pool 4 winners and today’s opponents in Paris.

Paul Alo-Emile, Jonathan Danty and Sergio Parisse scored Stade Français’ three tries, while Damien Hoyland and Dougie Fife crossed for Edinburgh, who picked up a losing bonus-point and progress as a home quarter-finalist.

The scorers:

For Stade Français:
Tries: Alo-Emile, Danty, Parisse
Con: Geraghty

For Edinburgh:
Tries: Hoyland, Fife

Enisei-STM 19-33 Newcastle Falcons

Newcastle Falcons made it a perfect six wins from six record in the Challenge Cup pool stage after they beat Enisei-STM 33-19 in Tbilisi.

Wing Adam Radwan scored a hat-trick while Mark Wilson and Toby Flood also crossed, with fly-half Flood kicking eight points off the tee.

Enisei did score three tries of their own through Federico Giliberti, Anton Sychev and Mikheil Gachechiladze, but it was Newcastle’s day.

They came from behind to lead 26-7 at the break thanks to four tries and kept their composure to add a fifth score that secured the win.

The scorers:

For Enisei-STM:
Tries: Giliberti, Sychev, Gachechiladze
Cons: Budychenko 2

For Newcastle:
Tries: Wilson, Radwan 3, Flood
Cons: Flood 4


Krasny Yar 17-24 London Irish

London Irish ended their Challenge Cup group phase on a winning note as they beat Krasny Yar 24-17 in Tbilisi.

It wasn’t easy for the Exiles, though, as the Russian side pushed them all the way at Avchala Stadium, picking up a losing bonus-point for their efforts.

Krasny Yar led 10-7 at the break thanks to a try from Viktor Arhip and they extended their buffer to 10 points early in the second-half when Grigory Tsnobiladze went over.

London Irish rallied, however, as they added to Matt Williams’ first-half try with Tom Fowlie (2) and Ben Loader crossing in the final quarter to give them a second pool win.

The scorers:

For Krasny Yar:
Tries: Arhip, Tsnobiladze
Cons: Malaguradze, Apikotoa
Pen: Malaguradze

For London Irish:
Tries: Williams, Fowlie 2, Loader
Cons: Atkins 2


Zebre 38-30 Agen

Zebre claimed their first win of the European campaign as they beat Agen 38-30, leaving the French side propping up the Pool 3 table.

Marcello Violi, Giulio Bisegni and Matteo Minozzi scored for Zebre in the first-half before Johan Meyer added their fourth after the break.

Agen, who started well with early Loris Tolot and Alban Conduche scores, pressed for something from the game at Stadio Sergio Lanfranchi with a late try from Valentin Saurs, but Zebre held on with Carlo Canna’s 18 points proving vital.

The scorers:

For Zebre:
Tries: Violi, Bisegni, Minozzi, Meyer
Cons: Canna 3
Pens: Canna 4
Yellow Card: Bisegni

For Agen:
Tries: Tolot, Conduche, Saurs
Cons: Verdu 2, Russell
Pens: Verdu 3


Connacht 50-14 Oyonnax

Connacht guaranteed themselves a home quarter-final after they eased past Oyonnax, winning 50-14 at the Sportsground on Saturday.

Niyi Adeolokun scored a hat-trick while Bundee Aki, Tiernan O’Halloran, Matt Healy, Tom Farrell and a penalty try provided their other points, with Craig Ronaldson and O’Halloran on target off the kicking tee in an easy victory.

Axel Muler and Daniel Ikpefan crossed for the French visitors, who finish a miserable pool campaign with just one win to their name.

The scorers:

For Connacht:
Tries: Adeolokun 3, Aki, O’Halloran, Healy, Farrell, Penalty Try
Cons: Ronaldson 2, O’Halloran 2

For Oyonnax:
Tries: Muler, Ikpefan
Cons: Fuertes, Hall
Yellow Card: Hansell-Pune


Dragons 33-17 Bordeaux-Bègles

Dragons ended their European pool campaign in ideal fashion as they beat Bordeaux-Bègles 33-17, claiming a bonus-point in the process.

This win nudges them above their opponents into second place in Pool 1 and gives them a chance of progressing to the quarter-finals.

Elliot Dee, Cory Hill, Ashton Hewitt, Lloyd Fairbrother and Dorian Jones crossed for them, with Gavin Henson and Jones kicking points.

Bordeaux-Bègles’ try scorers were Fa’asui Fuatai and Jules Gimbert as their campaign ended in disappointing fashion at Rodney Parade.

The scorers:

For Dragons:
Tries: Dee, Hill, Hewitt, Fairbrother, Jones
Cons: Henson 2, Jones 2

For Bordeaux-Bègles:
Tries: Fuatai, Gimbert
Cons: Volavola, Schoeman
Pen: Volavola

The qualifiers for the 2017/18 Challenge Cup quarter-finals and their rankings at the conclusion of the pool stage have been finalised.

1 Pau (winner Pool 3 – 29 points)
2 Newcastle Falcons (winner Pool 1 – 28 points)
3 Connacht (winner Pool 5 – 26 points)
4 Edinburgh (winner Pool 4 – 25 points)
5 Cardiff Blues (winner Pool 2 – 21 points)
6 Gloucester (best pool runner-up – 21 points)
7 Brive (second best pool runner-up – 17 points)
8 Stade Français (third best pool runner-up – 17 points)

The quarter-final matches to be played on 29/30/31 March / 1 April are as follows:

QF 1: Pau v Stade Français
QF 2: Edinburgh v Cardiff Blues
QF 3: Connacht v Gloucester
QF 4: Newcastle Falcons v Brive

NB The exact dates, venues and kick-off times for the matches will be announced next week.

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