Planet Rugby

Ospreys down Connacht

10th May 2014 20:02

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SKY_MOBILE Alun-Wyn Jones - Ospreys Heineken Cup

Scorer: Alun Wyn Jones

The Ospreys finished their season on a high in fifth place in the PRO12 with a huge 45-20 victory over Connacht on Saturday.

Ospreys headed into the game looking to bounce back from last week's shock defeat at Zebre, while Connacht were seeking to address a run of four defeats.

An early penalty from Miah Nikora handed Connacht an early lead, but the advantage didn't last long. On 13 minutes, Jeff Hassler broke from halfway and demonstrated some tricky footwork to convert the run into five points, which Dan Biggar turned into seven with the conversion.

But Connacht found a response and they were in front when Danie Poolman snapped up Nikora's cross-field kick before finding Darragh Leader, who crossed for an unconverted try.

The hosts regained the advantage when Ashley Beck stormed through a gap, and Biggar converted to make it 14-8. Biggar then added a penalty to stretch the home advantage to nine points, before Alun Wyn Jones put real daylight between the two teams with Ospreys' third try of the evening, which Biggar again converted.

A frantic first half continued as Connacht gave themselves hope just before the interval through Denis Buckley's converted try under the maul. But Ospreys struck a hammer blow six minutes into the second half when Beck completed a brace for Biggar to convert.

And the game was over as a contest when Nicky Smith capitalised on more pack dominance to score, and Biggar to converted to make it 38-15 with little time for a comeback.

The visitors did give themselves a glimmer when Conor Gilsenan burrowed over, but normal service was resumed when Dan Baker got over for Ospreys, which rounded off the scoring.

For Ospreys:
Tries: Hassler 2, Beck, Wyn Jones, Smith
Cons: Biggar 4
Pen: Biggar

For Connacht:
Tries: Leader, Buckley, Gilsenan
Con: Nikora
Pen: Nikora

The teams:

Ospreys: 15 Sam Davies, 14 Hanno Dirksen, 13 Ashley Beck, 12 Andrew Bishop, 11 Jeff Hassler, 10 Dan Biggar, 9 Tom Habberfield, 8 Dan Baker, 7 Justin Tipuric, 6 Sam Lewis, 5 Ian Evans, 4 Alun Wyn Jones (c), 3 Aaron Jarvis, 2 Scott Baldwin, 1 Nicky Smith
Replacements: 16 Scott Otten, 17 Marc Thomas, 18 Adam Jones, 19 Tyler Ardron, 20 Joe Bearman, 21 Tito Tebaldi, 22 Jonathan Spratt, 23 Aisea Natoga

Connacht: 15 Darragh Leader, 14 Danie Poolman, 13 Eoin Griffin, 12 Dave McSharry, 11 Matt Healy, 10 Miah Nikora, 9 Kieran Marmion, 8 John Muldoon (c), 7 Conor Gilsean, 6 Andrew Browne, 5 Mick Kearney, 4 Aly Muldowney, 3 Ronan Loughney, 2 Dave Heffernan, 1 Denis Buckley
Replacements: 16 Jack Dinneen, 17 Finlay Beahlam, 18 Rodney Ah You, 19 Michael Swift, 20 Eoin McKeon, 21 Caolin Blade, 22 Dan Parks, 23 Robbie Henshaw

Referee: Andrew McMenemy (Sco)

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