Second half fightback secures quarter-final berth

Second half fightback secures quarter-final berth

Edinburgh ran in five tries to see off Bayonne and reach the EPCR Challenge Cup Quarter-Finals.

With the match moved from Hive Stadium to Scottish Gas Murrayfield after Storm Kathleen brought strong winds and a yellow weather warning, Tom Spring got Bayonne’s opening converted try.

Hamish Watson crossed to bring the hosts back to 7-5 down at the break.
Spring went over again after Matt Currie’s stunning solo try, before two Ben Vellacott scores and one from Duhan van der Merwe took the home team through.

Sean Everitt’s side will play Sharks or Zebre Parma in the last-eight, with the latter two teams meeting in Durban today (Sunday 7 April).
The visitors struck first on the night after a coorageous start to the knockout encounter.

Bayonne built off a lineout and Spring’s side shimmy and dart over the line broke the impasse before he himself added the conversion.
Then came the Edinburgh response with Watson driving over and grounding. Healy’s conversion attempt was wide.

Bayonne’s lead held into the second half but Currie’s searing burst and finish from 40m out got the hosts in front for the first time and Healy converted.

The French side pegged Edinburgh back with a Spring penalty and the fly-half sped clear to go over in the left corner for his second try, though he could not add the conversion.

Vellacott got Edinburgh back in front as he marked his return to the line-up by weaving one way then the other before going under the posts.

Yan Lestrade’s challenge as he tried to stop Vellacott caught the scrum-half on the head and Bayonne centre was sent to the sin-bin before Healy converted.

The home side took advantage with Vellacott grounding again off a ruck and Healy once again converting.

With an 11-point lead, Edinburgh sought a fifth try to put the result beyond doubt and Van der Merwe made his contribution with a touch down in the left corner. Healy kicked well from wide to take his side to 33 points.

Bayonne needed two converted scores to stand a chance of recovery but scarcely looked like breaching Edinburgh again in the closing stages.

Edinburgh: Goosen, Henry, Bennett, Currie, Van Der Merwe, Healy, Vellacott, de Bruin, Ashman, Nel, Skinner, Gilchrist, Ritchie, Watson, Mata.

Replacements: Dean for Henry (74), Lang for Bennett (62), Price for Vellacott (65), Jones for de Bruin (75), Cherry for Ashman (57), Rae for Nel (66), Hodgson for Gilchrist (65), Crosbie for Watson (58).

Bayonne: Callandret, Pourailly, Martocq, Lestrade, Megdoud, Spring, Rouet, Bethune, Giudicelli, Scholtz, Ceyte, Leindekar Virginio, Bourdeau, Heguy, Ariceta.

Replacements: Dolhagaray for Callandret (59), Buliruarua for Lestrade (64), Labarbe for Rouet (59), Castillon for Bethune (50), Acquier for Giudicelli (50), Villar for Scholtz (64), K. Mikautadze for Leindekar Virginio (50), Huguet for Heguy (70). Sin Bin: Lestrade (53).

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