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Page last updated at 16:17 GMT, Sunday, 27 February 2011

Ospreys 33-18 Connacht

Ospreys (16) 33
Tries: Fussell, Prydie, Parker, Smith Cons: Biggar 2 Pens: Biggar 2 Drop-goal: Biggar
Connacht (8) 18
Tries: O'Connor, Swift. Con: Nikora. Pens: Keatley 2.

Richard Fussell takes on Connacht
Richard Fussell takes on Connacht in the Ospreys' triumph

The Ospreys returned to second place in the Magners League with a bonus-point win over Connacht at the Liberty Stadium on Sunday.

Full-back Richard Fussell, wing Tom Prydie, centre Sonny Parker and hooker Mefin Davies went over for the hosts, who led 16-8 at the break.

The visitors' tries came from flanker Jonny O'Connor and lock Michael Swift, but they could not match the hosts.

There was also a return from the bench for Wales centre Andrew Bishop.

Bishop took over from Ashley Beck 12 minutes from the end after recovering from ankle damage suffered against Cardiff Blues on New Year's Eve.

Replacement hooker Davies sealed the Ospreys a bonus point victory with a try five minutes into injury time to give the region their third successive Magners League win.

It was a victory which takes the Welsh side up to second place in the table - but they are nine points adrift of leaders Munster.

The Ospreys, who were missing 25 players - 16 on representative duty and nine on a lengthening injury list, twice fought back from being in the first half before stamping their authority on the contest.

The home side enjoyed the majority of the possession in the first period but trailed on two occasions - 3-0 and 8-3.

Connacht took the lead in the third minute minutes with a long range Ian Keatley penalty, following a lineout infringement.

For the next 20 minutes it was all the Ospreys, although all they had to show for it was a short range Biggar drop-goal just when a try looked certain to be coming their way.

he Ospreys were then stunned by Connacht scoring a try from their first legitimate attack. Keatley's break set up wing Brian Tuohy, who put his captain Jonny O'Connor over.

A golden opportunity of an Ospreys try went begging after centre Beck spilled Hanno Dirksen's pass with the line at his mercy.

Two Dan Biggar penalties sandwiched a fine try for Fussell, who ran a fine angle on to Beck's pass, although the Connacht players were convinced it was forward.

There was no such doubt about the Ospreys' second try three minutes into the second half, which saw Wales wing Prydie scorch in after good work from Fussell, Beck and Sonny Parker.

And it was Parker who went in for the Ospreys' third try on 61 minutes after some good work by replacement prop Ryan Bevington.

But the Ospreys lost their way for the next 15 minutes and were forced to defend before leaking a try by Swift.

The home side, however, regrouped and in a final push for the fourth try drove a five-metre line-out which saw 38-year-old Davies emerge from a pile of bodies having scored the final try.

Ospreys: Fussell; Prydie, Parker, Beck, Dirksen; Biggar, Webb; D Jones, Bennett, Griffiths, Gough, Evans, Smith, Tipuric, Collins.
Replacements: Bishop for Beck (68), Bevington for D Jones (51), M Davies for Bennett (80), Cross for Griffiths (69), King for Evans (75).
Not Used: Lloyd, Isaacs, Flanagan.

Connacht: Duffy; Tuohy, Ta'auso, Nathan, Carr; Keatley, F Murphy; Wilkinson, Flavin, Hagan, Swift, McCarthy, A Browne, O'Connor, Ofisa.
Replacements: Matthews for Nathan (54), Nikora for Keatley (65), Willis for F Murphy (49), Loughney for Wilkinson (69), Ah You for Hagan (54), Upton for McCarthy (62).
Not Used: D Murphy, McComish.

Att: 5,851

Ref: Stefano Penne (Italy).

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see also
Benetton Treviso 18-34 Ospreys
19 Feb 11 |  Ospreys
Connacht 37-8 Glasgow
18 Feb 11 |  Rugby Union
Connacht duo not Irish-qualified
16 Feb 11 |  Connacht
BBC Sport Wales coverage
03 Oct 11 |  Wales
RaboDirect Pro12
11 Apr 07 |  Rugby Union

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