European Challenge Cup
Exiles breeze past Dax
December 5, 2008
Sailosi Tagicakibau crossed for a brace of tries at the Madejski Stadium
© Getty Images
London Irish cruised to a third successive bonus-point triumph with a 38-0 win over Dax in Pool One of the European Challenge Cup. Sailosi Tagicakibau and Alfredo Lalanne grabbed a brace of tries in either half while scores by Shane Geraghty and Bob Casey rounded off a comprehensive victory in the south west of France.
The Exiles made light work of atrocious conditions at the Stade Maurice Boyau to run in six tries to sail towards the quarter-final stages. The convincing win for the Premiership leaders leaves them 11 points clear of their rivals Rovigo and Connacht who now face a crunch clash in Italy tomorrow.
Tony Booth's men arrived in France with maximum points from the first two rounds and they did not waste any time in getting into their stride. The visitors took the lead inside three minutes when Tagicakibau touched down and Peter Hewat added the first of four conversions to give London Irish the perfect start.
Samoan left wing Tagicakibau then scored his second try of the night in the 32nd minute to hand the English outfit a commanding 12-0 interval lead. Fly-half Geraghty crossed for London Irish's third in the 56th minute which Australian full-back Hewat duly converted.
Then Irish lock Casey stormed over to clinch the bonus-point in the 68th minute and end any lingering hopes of a Dax fightback. But the visitors kept up the pressure and compounded the misery on Dax who have yet to register their first points in the competition this season.
Backs replacement Lalanne scored the fifth try with just nine minutes remaining before sealing the win in injury-time.
Dax: Bortolussi, Borges, Argel, Bell, Diaz, Petitjean, Morlaes, Castex, Jaen, Decamps, Guironnet, Mazel, Adrillon, Pendanx, Caillet, Lealamanua.
Replacements: Williams for Petitjean (3), Lealamanua for Decamps (46), Bonet for Lealamanua (72). Not Used: Bert, Cros, Nanuku, Pezet.
Yellow Card - A Mazel (51)
London Irish: Hewat, Ojo, Seveali'i, Mapusua, Tagicakibau, Geraghty, Hodgson, Corbisiero, Paice, Lea'aetoa, Roche, Casey, Danaher, S. Armitage, Hala'ufia.
Replacements: Gower for Mapusua (), Lalanne for Hodgson (69), D. Murphy for Corbisiero (50), Buckland for Paice (62), Dermody for Lea'aetoa (69), Hudson for S. Armitage (66). Not Used: Johnson.
Ref: Alan Falzone (Italy).