Amlin Challenge Cup
Wasps make history in Italy
October 12, 2013
Flanker Guy Thompson ran in three tries as Wasps dominated in Italy © Getty Images
London Wasps ran in 14 tries as they recorded their highest-ever European victory with a thumping 90-17 victory against Arix Viadana.
Wasps, who have been indifferent in the Aviva Premiership so far this season, were in scintilating form in Italy, with Viliami Helu and Guy Thompson both grabbing hat-tricks. Helu starred in the first half as he scored three of Wasps' eight trys before the interval, with a penalty try and further scores from Kearnan Myall, Thompson, Tommy Bell and Simon McIntyre, as well as 16 points from the boot of Joe Carlisle giving the visitors a commanding 56-10 half-time lead.
Viadana were limited to an early Tony Fenner penalty and a 40th-minute Andrea Barbieri try and there was no let up for the Italian side after the interval, with Thompson crossing twice in seven minutes to complete the second hat-trick of the afternoon.
Replacement Jack Moates was the next to get in on the party, crossing twice in succession before the hour-mark to cap his Wasps debut in fine style and move them into record-breaking territory. Charlie Hayter added a 13th try for Wasps on 72 minutes but Viadana added a consolation in the dying seconds, with Fenner converting his own score. But fittingly it was Wasps who had the final say, with Joe Simpson going over with the final action of the game to round off the win in style.
Bath bounced back from defeat at Sale to begin their Amlin Challenge Cup campaign with a dogged 15-6 win over French outfit Bordeaux-Begles.
George Ford was the key man yet again as his five penalties secured an impressive away victory at the Stade Chaban Delmas. Ford kicked Bath into a 6-0 lead with penalties after nine and 27 minutes before Bordeaux hit back with three points from scrum-half Manu Saubusse when second row Will Spencer was yellow carded seven minutes before the break.
A third penalty from Ford handed Bath a 9-3 advantage on the stroke of half-time and the young fly-half made it 12-3 with another 10 minutes after the interval. Paul James became the second Bath player to see yellow after 64 minutes and Saubusse cut the gap with his second strike with seven minutes left to play. But Bath held firm and Ford secured the win with his fifth success moments before the final whistle.
Tom Catterick's last-gasp penalty spared Newcastle Falcons' blushes as they scraped past Bucuresti 13-12 to start their Amlin Challenge Cup campaign in unconvincing fashion.
Newcastle's Joel Hodgson opened the scoring after just two minutes with a penalty but opposite number Vali Calafeteanu immediately levelled the deficit with his own effort from the tee as both defences dominated the opening exchanges. The home side looked like they would take a 12-3 lead in with them at half-time as Calafeteanu found the target with three more kicks before the half-hour mark, but Adam Powell's 40th-minute try, converted by Hodgson, saw Falcons narrow the gap to just two points at the interval.
Newcastle came out with plenty of attacking intent after the break but sloppy handling cost them the chance to immediately get back in front, before Hodgson hit the post with a penalty from 40 metres out. But as the clocked ticked down towards a famous victory Bucharest finally buckled, with Stephen Hihetah sin-binned for an intentional knock-on as the Falcons attacked. Despite the numerical disadvantage the Romanian outfit held firm until stoppage time, but with the final action of the game Catterick kept his composure to score the decisive penalty from 20 yards out.
Worcester Warriors are still without a win under Dean Ryan after Conrad Barnard's late penalty earned Oyannax a 9-9 draw in France.
The Warriors, who are bottom of the Premiership, led 9-3 at half-time thanks to the boot of Paul Warwick, but were forced to defend for much of the second period as they looked to record their first win of the 2013-14 campaign.
There was no way through Worcester's stern defensive wall and Barnard added his second penalty on 60 minutes, to follow up on his solitary first-half effort, but it looked as though it would not be enough for the home side. But with time expired he had one final time to make amends for an earlier kick which struck the woodwork, and he made no mistake to earn Oyonnax a share of the spoils.
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