EUROPEAN CHAMPIONS CUP: Munster secured bonus win; Exeter lose at Bordeaux

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MUNSTER 26 STADE FRANCAIS 13

Munster salvaged some pride from their disappointing Champions Cup campaign with a 26-13 bonus point win over Stade Francais at Thomond Park.

The Irish province avoided their worst ever European run of four successive defeats, with try-scoring captain and Ireland hopeful CJ Stander producing yet another man-of-the-match display.

Tries from Mike Sherry and Keith Earls had Munster leading 12-6 at half-time in greasy conditions, with Morne Steyn kicking two penalties for Stade in response.

Earls’ brilliant solo effort, which had the watching Ireland coach Joe Schmidt smiling, was followed immediately after half-time by Simon Zebo’s 41st score for the province, drawing him level with Munster’s record tryscorer Anthony Horgan.

BORDEAUX 34 EXETER 27

Exeter pushed Bordeaux-Begles close in France but a 34-27 defeat has left the Chiefs with a mountain to climb to progress in the European Champions Cup.

Dave Lewis, Byron McGuigan and Max Bodily all scored tries as a second-string Exeter rattled their French hosts.

But they fell agonisingly short in the end as Bordeaux claimed maximum points with a five-try performance.

Marco Tauleigne scored the winning try nine minutes from time after Adam Ashley-Cooper, Blair Connor, Louis-Benoit Madaule and Benat Auzqui had crossed earlier.

The result leaves Exeter with 11 points from five matches in Pool 2, five points adrift of leaders Ospreys, three behind Clermont Auvergne and level with Bordeaux.

All four sides still have a chance of getting through but Exeter, who host Ospreys in their final match, know they are now up against it.