Friday 13 December 2019

Calculators at the ready in points race

At this stage most Connacht supporters will have done their calculations. Is four points enough? What happens if there is a draw? Can anyone catch Pat Lam's side? Photo: Getty
At this stage most Connacht supporters will have done their calculations. Is four points enough? What happens if there is a draw? Can anyone catch Pat Lam's side? Photo: Getty

Declan Rooney

At this stage most Connacht supporters will have done their calculations. Is four points enough? What happens if there is a draw? Can anyone catch Pat Lam's side?

Whatever way the numbers are predicted to fall, one thing's for sure: a bonus point win at Stade Ernest Wallon will see Connacht top Pool 2, and put them in with a good shot of earning a home quarter-final.

By the time the action kicks off in Toulouse, both sides will know exactly what's needed to reach the last eight and to claim home advantage at that stage.

Tonight, Leinster's pool will be the first completed, but tomorrow sees the key action take place, with Glasgow Warriors, Toulon and Exeter all in the hunt for one of the three best runners-up positions.

On Sunday, Connacht's pool is the only one to be decided and all eyes will be on the location of one of Lam's greatest achievements as coach, in 2013.

It remains to be seen what sort of challenge the French side deliver this weekend, but their last-minute defeat to Wasps must surely have been a huge knock to their confidence.

A fine Yoann Huget try was well worked after some stunning ball retention, while a second try off the back of a hugely powerful maul looked to have given them an unlikely away win.

But somehow with the win in the bag Toulouse fell asleep and allowed Dan Robson to score following his quick tap penalty.

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