Watch - Genge and Radradra link up for SBW-style Bristol try
Bristol Rugby secured their spot at the top of their Challenge Cup group with a dominant 33-19 victory over Perpignan at Ashton Gate, despite having five match points deducted earlier in the week – and Ellis Genge and Semi Radradra were at the heart of the rousing win.
The hosts, who had already secured qualification, displayed their competitive prowess by scoring a total of five tries.
Bristol’s England prop, Ellis Genge, led the charge with a first-half double, but the team was unable to add to their score in the second half. The win secured an immaculate return of four wins for Bristol in the group phase.
Yet it was the England prop’s role in Ratu Naulago’s try in the 27th minute that might have been the highlight for the ‘Baby Rhino’.
Genge took a pass from Radradra just over the halfway line, swatting aside defenders before offloading back to Radradra 20 metres up the pitch. It goes to No.8 Fitz Harding who puts Naulago in in the corner.
Genge/Radradra is the combo you never knew you needed but it's pure?
— RugbyPass (@RugbyPass) January 21, 2023
The result was an upbeat moment in what has been a rough week and indeed season for the Gallagher Premiership side. Earlier in the week the Bears were penalized for misconduct by tournament organizers European Professional Club Rugby.
The club was charged for selecting lock Elliott Stooke as a replacement in their match-day squad for two fixtures last month. An independent disciplinary committee heard submissions from senior Bristol officials, and the club accepted that they had breached tournament rules.
As a result, Bristol were docked five match points, which drops them to fifth in their Challenge Cup pool. Despite the penalty, Bristol has still qualified for the round of 16. A fine of €10,000 (£8,700) has been suspended until the end of next season and Bristol has stated that they will not be appealing the decision.
In a statement, EPCR said: “The committee heard that Stooke, who had been previously made redundant by Wasps, was properly registered to play for Bristol Bears as an additional player in the EPCR Challenge up, and that under EPCR’s rules, additional players must be contracted to the club for a minimum period of three months.”
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