Planet Rugby

Connacht ruin Zebre's homecoming

07th September 2012 22:33

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Miah Nikora Connacht

Miah Nikora: 15 points for Connacht

Connacht ruined Zebre's home debut in the RaboDirect PRO12 by securing a 30-17 victory in a fiesty contest in Parma.

Winger Tiernan O'Halloran and number eight George Naoupu both scored tries to help the visitors record their first league win of the new campaign.

Miah Nikora also made a major contribution to Connacht's cause, the fly-half kicking 15 points to keep Zebre out of range.

Wing Samuele Pace and former Blue Bulls flanker Dries van Schalkwyk both touched down for the hosts, but it was not enough to see the Italians come out on top.

Pace went from hero to villain after his try when he tackled Connacht full-back Gavin Duffy in the air and was shown a yellow card.

The Irish side made the most of the man advantage with Nikora's fourth successful kick of the night before Naoupu's try gave them some breathing space.

Dave Gannon and Rodney Ah You were both sent to the sin-bin for the visitors but Zebre's Luca Redolfini was also ordered off for 10 minutes and Connacht sealed the win through lock Mike McCarthy.

The scorers:

For Zebre:
Tries: Pace, Van Schalkwyk
Cons: Orquera 2
Pen: Orquera

For Connacht:
Tries: McCarthy, Naoupu, O'Halloran
Cons: Nikora 3
Pens: Nikora

Zebre: 15 Sinoti Sinoti, 14 Giovanbattista Venditti, 13 Alberto Benettin, 12 Gonzalo Garcia (c), 11 Samuele Pace, 10 Luciano Orquera, 9 Alberto Chillon , 8 Andries Van Schalkwyk, 7 Mauro Bergamasco, 6 Filippo Cristiano, 5 Josh Sole, 4 Quintin Geldenhuys, 3 David Ryan, 2 Carlo Festuccia, 1 Salvatore Perugini.
Replacements: 16 Davide Giazzon, 17 Andrea De Marchie, 18 Luca Redolfini, 19 Emiliano Caffini, 20 Nicola Belardo, 21 Tito Tebaldi, 22 Alberto Chiesa, 23 Ruggero Trevisan.

Connacht:15 Gavin Duffy (c), 14 Tiernan O'Halloran, 13 Eoin Griffin, 12 Mata Fifita, 11 Fetu'u Vainikolo, 10 Miah Nikora, 9 Kieran Marmion, 8 George Naoupu, 7 Johnny O'Connor, 6 John Muldoon, 5 Mike McCarthy, 4 Michael Swift, 3 Ronan Loughney, 2 Ethienne Reynecke, 1 Denis Buckley.
Replacements: 16 Adrian Flavin, 17 Rodney Ah You, 18 Nathan White, 19 Dave Gannon, 20 Willie Faloon, 21 Frank Murphy, 22 Matthew Jarvis, 23 Robbie Henshaw.

Referee: Ian Davies

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