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Page last updated at 18:41 GMT, Saturday, 4 September 2010 19:41 UK

Magners League: Connacht 40-17 Dragons

Connacht (20) 40
Tries: Ofisa, Cronin, penalty try, Keatley Cons: Keatley (4) Pens: Keatley (4)
Dragons (9) 17
Try: Harries Pens: Jones 4


Magners League action
Ian Keatley evades a tackle from Hugo Ellis at Galway

Connacht got their Magners League campaign off to a winning start with a comprehensive 23-point win over the Dragons at the Sportsground in Galway.

Ray Ofisa and Sean Cronin scored tries in the first half while Ian Keatley kicked 10 points and Matthew Jones kicked three penalties for Dragons.

Keatley took his personal tally to 25 points with a second-half try and a further 10 points with the boot.

Will Harries scored the Dragons' try and Jones kicked a further penalty.

Connacht were awarded a penalty try in the second half as Eric Elwood began his coaching reign in fine style.

Ofisa put the Irish province ahead by running in behind the posts for a third-minute try, which Keatley converted.

Keatley and Jason Tovey were off-target with penalty attempts and then Connacht's Ezra Taylor became the first of three players to be sin-binned after his hand caught Tovey around the face.

Jones and Keatley traded penalties, before Dragons lock Luke Charteris received a yellow card midway through the half for coming in at the side of the maul after repeated warnings.

Jones missed with his second penalty attempt, this time from long range, but fly-half Keatley was successful with his next kick to extend his side's lead to 10 points.

Cronin skipped past Tovey to cross the Dragons line in the 32nd minute, and Keatley again converted, but Jones knocked over two penalties before the break to reduce the deficit.

Jones was unable to add to his penalty count eight minutes into the second half and 10 minutes later Gavin Duffy was the third player to be sent to the bin for a 10-minute period for not rolling away after tackling Charteris.

Jones kicked his next penalty between the posts, but Keatley responded with two penalties for Connacht, and these were followed by a 69th-minute penalty try, awarded after a series of scrum resets.

Keatley converted and then converted his own 72nd-minute try, which saw him brilliantly outpace both Tovey and Aled Brew for the line.

Winger Harries touched down for a consolation try for the Dragons five minutes from time, Jones failing to add the additional two points.

Aled Brew was stretchered off with a worrying neck injury.


Connacht: Gavin Duffy; Troy Nathan, Niva Taauso, Keith Matthews, Fionn Carr; Ian Keatley, Frank Murphy (captain); Brett Wilkinson, Sean Cronin, Jamie Hagan; Michael Swift, Bernie Upton; Michael McCarthy, Ray Ofisa, Ezra Taylor.
Replacements: Adrian Flavin, Ronan Loughney, Rob Sweeney, Dave Nolan, Mike McComish, Cillian Willis, Miah Nikora, Tiernan O'Halloran.

Dragons: Jason Tovey; Will Harries, Rhodri Gomer-Davies, Tom Riley, Aled Brew; Matthew Jones, Danny Lee; Hugh Gustafson, Steve Jones, Ben Castle, Luke Charteris (c), Scott Morgan, Joe Bearman, Robin Sowden-Taylor, Hugo Ellis.
Replacements: Lloyd Burns, Pat Palmer, Ali McKenzie, Rob Sidoli, Danny Lydiate, Gavin Thomas, Nicky Griffiths, David Bishop.

Referee: Mr James Jones (Wales)

Attendance: 3,000



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see also
Magners League 2010/11
02 Jul 10 |  Rugby Union
RaboDirect Pro12 table
09 Aug 06 |  Tables
Regional rugby archive
07 Jul 03 |  Welsh
BBC Sport NI coverage
05 Aug 11 |  Northern Ireland
BBC Scotland programme guide
26 Jul 09 |  Scotland
BBC Sport Wales coverage
03 Oct 11 |  Wales
Coming up next on Scrum V...
03 Nov 08 |  Welsh


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