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Damian Penaud brilliance helps Clermont knock Bristol out of Challenge Cup

Damian Penaud with ball in hand for Clermont. Photo by Michael Steele/Getty Images

France star Damian Penaud claimed two tries as Bristol exited the Challenge Cup following a 33-26 last-16 defeat to three-time champions Clermont.


Tries from Tomas Lavanini, Les Bleus wing Penaud and George Moala helped the French club lead 22-20 at the end of an action-packed opening period at Ashton Gate.

Pat Lam’s Bears remained in contention thanks to England scrum-half Harry Randall and Semi Radradra each converting their own scores.

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AJ MacGinty landed 16 points across the evening for the 2020 tournament winners, but rival fly-half Anthony Belleau kicked 13 of his own.

Penaud, who enjoyed a fine Guinness Six Nations campaign with his country, ultimately ended hopes of a fightback from the hosts with his second score of the game 10 minutes from time.

Scarlets await Clermont in the last eight after a stunning solo score from Vaea Fifita helped them to a 19-7 victory over Brive in Llanelli.

The Welsh club led 9-0 at the interval following three Sam Costelow penalties.


Brive reduced the deficit to two points early in the second half after former Ireland fly-half Stuart Olding added the extras to his own try.

Tongan lock Fifita lit up Parc Y Scarlets minutes later by running half the length of the field to cross before the hosts sealed progression courtesy of a late score from flanker Aaron Shingler.


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mitch 45 minutes ago
The Wallabies team Joe Schmidt must pick to win back Bledisloe Cup

Rodda will be a walk up starter at lock. Frost if you analyse his dominance has little impact and he’s a long way from being physical enough, especially when you compare to Rodda and the work he does. He was quite poor at the World Cup in his lack of physicality. Between Rodda and Skelton we would have locks who can dominate the breakdown and in contact. Frost is maybe next but Schmidt might go for a more physical lock who does their core work better like Ryan or LSL. Swain is no chance unless there’s a load of injuries. Pollard hasn’t got the scrum ability yet to be considered. Nasser dominated him when they went toe to toe and really showed him up. Picking Skelton effects who can play 6 and 8. Ideally Valetini would play 6 as that’s his best position and Wilson at 8 but that’s not ideal for lineout success. Cale isn’t physical enough yet in contact and defence but is the best backrow lineout jumper followed by Wright, Hanigan and Swinton so unfortunately Valetini probably will start at 8 with Wright or Hanigan at 6. Wilson on the bench, he’s got too much quality not to be in the squad. Paisami is leading the way at 12 but Hamish Stewart is playing extremely well also and his ball carrying has improved significantly. Beale is also another option based on the weekend. Beale is class but he’s also the best communicator of any Australian backline player and that can’t be underestimated, he’ll be in the mix.

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