European Rugby Challenge CupConnacht (17) 55Tries: Healy 4, Carty, Marmion, Farrell Cons: Carty 7 Pens: Carty 2Brive (10) 10Try: Germain Con: Germain Pen: Germain
Connacht produced a ruthless second-half display as they scored seven tries in a rout of Brive in their European Challenge Cup tie in Galway.
Matt Healy bagged four tries and Jack Carty scored a try, two penalties and seven conversions in a 25 point haul.
Kieran Marmion and Tom Farrell also scored tries as Connacht took a major step towards a quarter-final place with their fourth consecutive pool win.
Kieran Keane’s men now lead Worcester Warriors by seven points in Pool Five.
After a slow start meant they had to come from behind to , Connacht wasted no time in getting onto the scoreboard at the Sportsground.
The home side took the lead after just five minutes when Healy gathered a cross-field kick from Carty to score the first of his tries.
Carty added a penalty just six minutes later to extend Connacht’s early advantage before Brive responded with a try by full-back Gaetan Germain, who converted his own effort.
Carty’s try and conversion helped Connacht to restore their ten point lead just after the half-hour mark but Germain landed a penalty on the cusp of half-time to keep the French side in contention.
EUROPEAN CHALLENGE CUP POOL FIVETeamPlayedWonDrawnLostForAgainstBonus PtsPointsConnacht440015164319Worcester42029376412Brive41039913637Glasgow41036913604
Brive failed to score again as Connacht took control after the restart.
The Irish side made a blistering start to the second-half as Carty’s early penalty was followed by Healy’s second try of the match.
The visitors were struggling to keep pace with Connacht and a yellow card for Mike Tadjer in the 50th minute made their task even more difficult.
In the absence of their hooker, Brive conceded a further 14 points as Healy and substitute Marmion both got over the line.
Despite having already secured the bonus point, Connacht continued to hunt for tries and their persistence was rewarded in the final 11 minutes as Healy added his fourth before Farrell rounded-off the scoring with the home side’s seventh try of the night.
The result means Connacht can now secure a quarter-final berth by avoiding defeat in round five when they must travel to face the Warriors at Sixways Stadium while Brive visit fellow Top-14 strugglers Oyonnax.
Connacht: D Leader; C Kelleher, P Ahki, B Aki, M Healy; J Carty, J Mitchell; D Buckley, S Delahunt, F Bealham, U Dillane, Q Roux, C Gallagher, J Connolly, E Masterson (capt).
Replacements: T McCartney for S Delahunt (45), P McCabe for D Buckley (35), C Carey for F Bealham (45), J Cannon for U Dillane (64), J Muldoon, K Marmion for J Mitchell (57), T Farrell for B Aki (59), T O’Halloran.
Brive: G Germain; N Megdoud, A Mignardi (capt), B Petre, F Romanet; M Ugalde, F Cazenave; V Devisme, M Tadjer, D Bamba, J Snyman, J Uys, P Narisia, D Waqaniburotu, E Herjean.
Replacements: L Martin for D Waqaniborutu (52), K Asieshvili for V Devisme (47), J Johnston for D Bamba (47), S Koyamaibole for P Narisia (41), J Le Devedec for J Snyman (67), D Delarue for F Cazenave (67), T Laranjeira for G Germain (60), G Namy for Romanet (51).