Tag Archives: Niall O’Connor

RaboDirect Round-Up

Blues 21-14 Ulster

Friday 17th February @ Cardiff Arms Park

Ulster Ruck

Ulster failed to open up the Blues defence in the second half. (c) Simon Williams.

Despite leading at the break following a dominant first half, Ulster collected their 7th loss of the PRO12 season in Cardiff. A Robbie Diack try and two penalties from Ruan Pienaar gave Ulster an 11-6 half-time advantage. But second half tries from Dan Parks and Tom James plus a total of 11 points from Parks’ boot gave the home side a win that sees them jump above Ulster in the table. Brian McLaughlin will be disappointed with his side’s second-half effort.

That said, Ulster are still in contention for a play-off spot. Their losing bonus point leaves them 4 points off Glasgow Warriors in 4th. The Blues sit in 5th, 2 points ahead of Ulster, but crucially with a game in hand. That fixture will see them as favourites away to the Newport Gwent-Dragons. All Ulster can do is get back to winning ways, starting with a huge game on Friday when the Ospreys visit Ravenhill. That looks like a must-win if Ulster are to stay in the hunt.

Here’s Diack’s score from the Blues game. Decent turn of pace for his 3rd try in 4 games:


Leinster 16-13 Scarlets

Friday 17th February @ The RDS


McFadden on his way to scoring Leinster's only try. (c) Ken Bohane.

Fergus McFadden was the hero for Leinster as he slotted a penalty with the last kick of the game to earn his side a win.  It looked like ending all square at the RDS until Nigel Owens pinged Scarlets’ replacement prop Phil John for stupidly playing the ball in a ruck. McFadden confidently slotted the kick from over 40 metres out. The inside centre scored all of Leinster’s points on the night, converting his own try as well as adding three penalties.

The Scarlets were impressive, particularly with their aggressive defence. They limited the amount of chances Leinster created and held a 10-3 half-time lead. Dan Newton scored a try and a penalty for the Welsh side, while Stephen Jones converted the try and added a penalty of his own. The wet conditions contributed to a less sparkling Leinster showing than we have become used to. However, Joe Schmidt will surely be pleased that his side still ground out the victory. Leinster remain 10 points clear of the Ospreys after this narrow win. Next up, Schmidt’s men face a trip to Firhill to take on the Warriors this Saturday.

Here’s the highlights of the Scarlets game:


Treviso 14-35 Munster 

Saturday 18th February @ Stadio di Monigo

Simon Zebo clears copy

Zebo scored two tries as well as spending 10 minutes in the sin-bin. (c) Ivan O'Riordan.

A late Simon Zebo try ensured a crucial bonus point win for Munster despite a sluggish performance. The opening thirty minutes were extremely positive from Munster as they raced into a 24-0 lead thanks to tries from Danny Barnes, Zebo and Johne Murphy as well as the boot of ROG. But from that point, Munster relinquished their control of the game and allowed a poor Treviso team back in. The yellow cards to Mick O’Driscoll and Zebo didn’t help Munster. In the end though, Tony McGahan will be content with the five points.

Ronan O’Gara was flawless from the tee while Peter O’Mahony and Dave O’Callaghan showed their potential in the back-row. This win sees Munster up into 3rd, thanks in part to Connacht’s draw with Glasgow. The Ospreys in 2nd are just 4 points ahead, and Munster have a game in hand as well as a better points difference. Thomond Park is the venue for the visit of the Cardiff Blues on Friday as Munster continue to push for a home play-off.

If you missed the Munster vs. Treviso game, watch the whole thing here on the RTE Player!


Connacht 13-13 Warriors

Saturday 18th February @ The Sportsground


Connacht captain Gavin Duffy couldn't help his side to a win. (c) Andy Scrutton.

Niall O’Connor salvaged a draw for Connacht with a penalty at the death in Galway on Saturday evening. It’s impossible not to be repetitive about Connacht’s performances this season, but once again this was a match they could have won. Handling errors and silly penalties were Connacht’s downfall again. O’Connor’s late score did allow Eric Elwood’s side to end their 10-game losing run in the PRO12, but it could have been more than just 2 points.

Connacht’s only try of the game came from the prolific Tiernan O’Halloran, as he collected O’Connor’s cross-kick to score. O’Conner converted as well as notching two penalties. The Warriors’ try came from prop Jon Welsh, with Ruaridh Jackson kicking 5 points. Duncan Weir came off the bench to slot what looked like the match-winning penalty before a John Muldoon try-saving tackle prevented the Warriors from wrapping things up. O’Connor then took his late chance. Connacht drop back to 11th in the table after the Dragons beat Edinburgh. Elwood and his men welcome the Scottish side to Galway on Friday and will hope to emulate the Dragons’ feat.


Here’s the latest PRO12 table:


Photos courtesy:  Simon Williams, Ken Bohane, Ivan O’Riordan, Andy Scrutton.

Heineken Cup Round 6 Round-Up

Simon Zebo was the hattrick hero as Munster destroyed the Saints on Saturday. (c) Ivan O'Riordan.


  Connacht 9-8 Harlequins

Friday 20th January @ The Sportsground

A determined, ferocious effort from Connacht earned them their first ever Heineken Cup win at a wet and windy Sportsground on Friday night. Man of the match John Muldoon said afterwards that he and his teammates felt like they had  just won the tournament. While Munster’s huge win against Northampton on Saturday showed us one side of what makes rugby so special, Connacht showed a totally different side with their undying spirit and determination.

So, the awful run of losses is finally over. Connacht’s first win in fifteen games came thanks to what Muldoon called “a lot of ticker”. This heart was expressed through Connacht’s powerful, aggressive defence. ‘Quins failed to adapt to the conditions and the scrappy nature of the game suited Eric Elwood’s men. Niall O’Connor landed the crucial points with three penalties. Sam Smith touched down for Harlequins in the first-half but Nick Evans was off target with the conversion as well as a more straightforward second-half penalty.

Here’s the final table from Pool 6. Toulouse are the only team to advance to the quarter-finals:


Leinster 25-3 Montpellier

Saturday 21st January @ The RDS

Leinster completed their dominance of Pool 3 with a muscular win at home to Montpellier. Sean O’Brien, Rob Kearney and Cian Healy scored the tries while Fergus McFadden kicked ten points. Leinster did miss out on the try-scoring bonus point to leave Munster as top seeds after the pool stages. However, Joe Schmidt will be unconcerned following a good display from his team. Leinster will now host the Cardiff Blues, most probably at the Aviva, in April’s quarter-final.

Montpellier gave Leinster’s defence a severe testing for a 25 minute spell either side of half-time but the current Heineken Cup champions held firm. Schmidt will be hugely pleased to have only conceded three points, showing that Leinster can defend just as well as they cut teams open in attack. Some strong individual performances from the likes of Rob Kearney, Cian Healy and Gordon D’Arcy will have pleased Ireland coach Declan Kidney.

Here’s how Pool 3 finished up. Leinster are the only team to move on to the knock-out stages:

Pool 3

And here’s the highlights from the Leinster vs. Montpellier game:


Clermont 19-15 Ulster

Saturday 21st January @ Stade Marcel Michelin

Connacht’s win on Friday night meant that Ulster were already guaranteed a quarter-final spot coming into this game. After the narrow loss to Clermont, Brian McLaughlin stated that he was pleased his side had also secured that qualification on their own merits with a losing bonus point. However, he expressed his dissapointment at their failure to win and ensure a home draw. The Ulster performance was once again top class. This side, after a shaky and inconsistent first third of the season, has morphed into genuine Heineken Cup contenders.

The nature of this defeat will frustrate Ulster. Clermont scored the only try of the game through replacement hooker Ti’i Paulo. While the French side had been battering Ulster’s line at the time, the touchdown came only after an American football-style block by Nathan Hines. The fact that Hines was lucky to still be on the pitch after some highly cynical holding of Pedrie Wannenburg and Stephen Ferris only minutes before exacerbated the sense of frustration. The fact that dan Tuohy had been binned early in the game for a less serious offence topped off a one-sided display from referee Dave Pearson.

Still, Ulster will move on and now have a quarter-final with Munster to look forward to. That will be a momentous occasion in Thomond Park.

Here’s how Pool 4 finished up. Both Clermont and Ulster move on to the quarter-finals:

Pool 4

Here’s the highlights from the game:

And a closer look at the two incidents involving Nathan Hines. The Clermont try is first, followed by the Scottish second-row’s cynical holding:


Northampton 36-51 Munster

Saturday 21st January @ stadium:mk

Munster saved the best for last as they made it six wins from six to qualify as the top seeds for the quarter-finals. This scintillating performance was a stunning surprise from a Munster side who have, by their own admission, been winning without playing brilliantly up until now. Paul O’Connell had emphasised in recent weeks that his side needed to start converting more of the try-scoring chances they were creating. That finally happened to great effect at stadium:mk as Munster swept the Saints aside in the second-half.

Five tries from Johne Murphy, BJ Botha and Simon Zebo (3) ensured a try-scoring bonus point while Ronan O’Gara kicked 24 points. Munster had a sloppy opening quarter to the game, allowing Northampton pull into a 13-3 lead. At that stage, things weren’t looking good for Tony McGahan’s men, but they pulled back to 19-19 at half-time. After the interval, Munster were unstoppable as they repeatedly cut the Saints apart, despite the English side’s awesome dominance of the scrum. From being written off as a side in transition for most of the season,  Munster have marked themselves out as one of the teams to beat in this competition. The inter-pro quarter-final with Ulster will be fascinating.

Here’s a look at how Pool 1 finished. Munster are the only team into the quarters:

Here’s all five of the Munster tries. Enjoy!


Photos courtesy:  Ivan O’Riordan.

Heineken Cup Round 5 Round-Up

Munster secured a quarter-final by beating Castres on Saturday. (c) Ivan O'Riordan.


Ulster 41-7 Leicester

Friday 13th January @ Ravenhill

Ulster were irrepressible as they ripped the Tigers to shreds in front of an overjoyed crowd at Ravenhill. Tries from Craig Gilroy, Andrew Trimble (2) and Paul Marshall as well as 21 points from the boot of Ruan Pienaar did the damage for Brian McLaughlin’s team. Ulster completely dominated the Tigers, who had hopes of a push for the quarter-finals coming into this game. Ulster remain top of Pool 4 but now have the unenviable task of a trip to Clermont on Saturday.

Clermont showed good form themselves over the weekend as they humiliated Aironi. However, if Ulster can repeat Friday night’s performance then they have a real chance of winning in France. If they do lose, they can still top the group if – 1) they deny Clermont a try-scoring bonus point, 2) get a losing bonus point themselves and 3) either score more tries than Clermont in the game or lose by less than five points. Lots of permutations for what should be another thrilling Heineken Cup game.

Here’s Pool 4 heading into the final round of games next weekend:

Here’s the four Ulster tries from Friday night:


Munster 26-10 Castres

Saturday 14th January @ Thomond Park

Munster became the first side to secure a quarter-final berth in this season’s Heineken Cup as they overcame Castres at a packed Thomond Park on Saturday. Despite a promising opening ten minutes, which saw Johne Murphy cross for a well-worked try, Munster got dragged into a real battle with Castres’ second-string. Wian du Preez’s try with twelve minutes to go confirmed the win. Ronan O’Gara was as reliable as ever from the tee, converting both tries and adding four penalties.

Speaking after the game, Paul O’Connell admitted that Munster were”frustrated” with their performance. For the second week in a row, plenty of chances were created but there was a lack of accuracy in finishing them. Looking at the positives, Munster are in a much better position than this time last year and go to Northampton knowing that a win would guarantee a home quarter-final. The Saints will be out for revenge in a big way.

Pool 1 looks like this after Round 5:


Toulouse 24-3 Connacht

Saturday 14th January @ Stade Ernst Wallon

Connacht came away from Toulouse with a certain amount of pride after showing up well. Despite four tries for the home side, Connacht were much improved on last week’s loss to Aironi and were unlucky not to get a couple of tries themselves.  The travelling Connacht fans were rewarded for their loyalty and Eric Elwood will certainly find positives ahead of the final pool match against Harlequins on Friday night at the Sportsground.

Niall O’Connor opened the scoring after 14 minutes but Toulouse gradually got on top. The prolific wing Timoci Matanavou scored two tries with Maxime Medard and Louis Picamoles also crossing the whitewash. Lionel Beauxis was on target with two conversions. Connacht will look to finish off their maiden Heineken Cup campaign on a high against Harlequins. Conor O’Shea’s side can still qualify so a first win for Connacht would be a huge shock.

Here’s Pool 6 after the weekend’s action:

Here’s the highlights from the Toulouse game:


Glasgow 16-23 Leinster

Sunday 15th January @ Firhill

Joe Schmidt’s Leinster weren’t at their best in Glasgow but still managed a win that sees them secure a quarter-final with a game to spare. As predicted, Glasgow worked hard as they fought for their Heineken Cup lives. They will be dissapointed with the soft try they conceded to Rob Kearney. If truth be told though, the Warriors never had enough quality to come out on top.

Johnny Sexton kicked one penalty for Leinster but when he picked up a calf strain, Fergus McFadden took over the kicking duties. The centre slotted two conversions and two penalties to top off a fantastic all-round performance. Isaac Boss was the other Leinster try-scorer. Leinster host Montpellier at the RDS on Saturday and a win would be enough to ensure a crucial home quarter-final. That win should be well within Leinster’s capabilities.

Here’s Pool 3 after the fifth round of matches:

Here’s the highlights from the Warriors vs. Leinster game:


Photo courtesy:  Ivan O’Riordan.

Heineken Cup Round-Up

Gloucester 23-19 Connacht

Saturday 17th December @ Kingsholm

Connacht's defence let them down at the death. Photo via Eoin Gardiner.

Connacht came so, so close to ending their miserable run of defeats but were denied as Gloucester replacement Johnny May scored a try with only four minutes remaining. This was a much improved showing from the Heineken Cup minnows and they will be devastated to have left this one behind them. In doing so, they have now recorded a club record 10th defeat in a row. If they can match this performance at Kingsholm in the coming weeks, that run will finally come to an end.

Connacht scored one lovely try after Frank Murphy intercepted Gloucester flyer Charlie Sharples’ pass. The scrumhalf offloaded to Gavin Duffy who then popped the ball back inside to Murphy. George Naoupu took Murphy’s second offload and looked to be clear, but was hauled down metres short of the tryline. He had the awareness to pop the ball off the deck to the supporting Tiernan O’Halloran who dotted down. Niall O’Connor converted that try and added four penalties over the course of the 80 minutes.

For Gloucester, outhalf Tim Taylor scored a try, conversion and penalty in the first half before being replaced by Freddie Burns at the break. Burns knocked over two penalties as well as the conversion after May’s late try. The match looked to have gone Connacht’s way when O’Connor was successful with a penalty 8 minutes from time to leave his side 19-16 up. But a weak missed tackle by substitute hooker Adrian Flavin allowed May to break through the Connacht line and use his pace to go all the way.

There are certainly positives Connacht can take from this defeat. O’Connor was vastly better than the previous weekend. His kicking from hand was exquisite at times. Along with O’Halloran, Eoin Griffin and David McSharry there is obvious potential in the Connacht backline. Clearly, forwards coach Dan McFarland spent a lot of the week running up to this game working on set pieces as Connacht were greatly improved at the scrum and lineout. There were far fewer individual errors too, but as we saw with May’s late try, even one mistake can have fatal consequences.

Here’s a look at Pool 6 after the weekend’s action:

Aironi 20-46 Ulster

17th December @ Stadio Brianteo

Ian Humphreys kicked 12 points in Italy. Photo via M+MD.

Ulster scored 6 tries as they overcame a second-half resurgence from Aironi to leave Italy with a five crucial points. Brian McLaughlin’s charges dominated the opening half to lead 27-3 at the break through tries from Andrew Trimble, Tom Court and a penalty try after a fantastic rolling maul was dragged down by the Aironi pack. Ian Humphreys converted all three tries and tacked on two penalties as well.

Ulster came out from the half-time interval in a less than convincing manner and allowed the Italians back into the game through their own sloppy play. Aironi scored two tries through wing Sinoti Sinoti and substitute Roberto Quartaroli. Luciano Orquera converted one of the tries to bring the game back to 27-15. Ulster were finally stirred into action and Craig Gilroy was on hand to finish a good team move which secured the bonus point.

Aironi then went over for another try when replacement back-row George Biagi took Quartaroli’s offload close to the line to go over untouched. But Ulster confirmed the win with late scores from South African Robbie Diack and sub Adam Macklin. Ruan Pienaar added two conversions in the second half to leave Ulster with a 46-20 win.

These five points keep Ulster at the top of Pool 4. The pool is wide open following Leicester’s win over Clermont, with all three sides still competing to top the group or secure a best placed runners-up spot. Ulster host Leicester in January in a must-win game. If they can do that and then secure a losing bonus point away to Clermont, it could be enough to see them through as a best placed runner-up. However, even though there are only two rounds of pool games left, nothing is decided. That’s the beauty of the Heineken Cup.

Here’s how Pool 4 stands after last weekend:

Here’s the Ulster tries against Aironi. This is a playlist, so just let each one play through and you’ll be able to select the next try:

And here’s the highlights from the other game in Pool 4 on Saturday between Leicester and Clermont:

Leinster 52-27 Bath

Saturday 17th December @ Aviva Stadium

Devin Toner had a great game for Leinster. Photo via M+MD.

Leinster scored 7 tries as they hammered a far inferior Bath side in front of a big crowd at the Avia. You can read the full match report here. At times, Leinster were just sensational and if they can consistently match the heights they hit at times on Saturday then no team will beat them. With such a strong squad too, it is hard to see injuries affecting Leinster too much. Still, there’s a long way to go before the business end of this competition.

Leinster are looking comfortable now at the top of Pool 3 and should secure a home quarter final with wins over Glasgow and Montpellier in the final two rounds of pool fixtures. Joe Schmidt will certainly head into Christmas in positive form after this win, although he was frustrated by how his team switched off for the closing quarter of the game. It is a measure of this Leinster squad that they will find negatives after a win like this.

Here’s how Pool 3 looks following the action over the weekend:

And here’s the highlights from Leinster’s win over Bath:

Munster 19-13 Scarlets

Sunday 18th December @ Thomond Park

O'Gara was crucial for Munster yet again. Photo via M+MD.

Munster had another hard-fought win on Sunday. They’ve now won 4 from 4 in Pool 1. It was a case of more of the same from Munster as O’Gara kicked 14 of the points and James Coughlan touched down at the back of a rolling maul. The Scarlets were threatening in patches but once again lacked the accuracy to finish off the breaks they made. They scored a try of their own through substitute prop Ken Owens. Rhys Priestland kicked a conversion and a penalty while Stephen Jones added a penalty of his own.

Tony McGahan was happy with another win but admitted to being disappointed with the performance from Munster. Regardless, Munster are now very well positioned to go on and secure a home quarter-final. They’re 4 points clear of the Scarlets at the top of Pool 1 and next up are a Castres side who have lost all interest in this competition. McGahan will hope to secure Munster’s first bonus point win in that game.

Here’s Pool 1 after four rounds of action:

Anyone who missed Munster vs. Scarlets can watch the entire match over on the TG4 Player. Just click on ‘Sport’ under the ‘Archive’ menu then select ‘Rugbai Corn Heineken’.

Photos courtesy:  Eoin Gardiner, M+MD.

Connacht Miss Opportunity to End Losing-Streak

Match Report – Heineken Cup

Connacht 10-14 Gloucester

10th December @ The Sportsground

Burns kicked three penalties in Gloucester's win. Photo via Pierre-Selim

Muldoon won another turnover penalty as Gloucester ran the clock down. O’Connor produced a long touch-finder up to the half-way line. With the clock ticking past the 80 minute mark, could Connacht come up with the last-gasp try that would end their torrid losing-streak? As Flavin set himself to throw, the rain suddenly started to fall, heavily. The black clouds had rolled in over the Sportsground as Freddie Burns put Gloucester 14-10 up with eight minutes left. Now, they burst all over Connacht as they tried in vain to pierce the Cherry and Whites’ defence. This nine match losing-streak is a black cloud over Connacht rugby at the moment and is threatening to break their season.

Connacht made a promising start as they looked for their first ever Heineken Cup win. An early turnover by Ethienne Reynecke led to Mark McCrea’s kick up the right being collected by Frank Murphy. With an overlap out to the left, Connacht butchered the opportunity when Niall O’Connor and a forward runner collided. Soon after, Dave McSharry bounced off Burns’ tackle and Connacht threatened out wide, but Kyle Tonetti’s offload to Gavin Duffy was knocked-on. Still, it was an encouraging start from Eric Elwood’s charges.

Burns was on target with his first penalty effort, from 45 metres out after Connacht were caught offside. The former England U20 outhalf had a strong wind behind him and easily cleared the posts. O’Connor had a chance to respond for Connacht when Dario Chistolini dropped his bind at a scrum. However, the Irish Wolfhounds international connected poorly with his strike and pushed the kickable penalty wide.

Burns’ next effort was from inside his own half and despite having the distance again, he was narrowly wide with the penalty. He made amends for that miss when Connacht were pinged for slowing the ball down after Burns had burst into their 22. Five minutes later, Burns had another chance from long distance after Ray Ofisa was pinged for hands in the ruck. The Gloucester outhalf hit the post to let Connacht off the hook as their penalty count continued to rise.

A lack of accuracy affected Connacht all afternoon and that was summed up in one passage of play on the 25 minute mark. Jim Hamilton gave away a penalty for a shove on Mike McCarthy and O’Connor opted to go for the corner. However, the outhalf’s kick failed to find the safety of touch and Olly Morgan kicked out of his 22. At the ensuing lineout, Connacht knocked on under no pressure, allowing Gloucester to come back downfield, eventually coming away with a try.

Captain Luke Narraway, Charlie Sharples and James Simpson-Daniel all made ground for the Cherry and Whites before scrumhalf Rory Lawson switched play back to the blindside and Samoan centre Eliota Fuimaono-Sapolu offloaded intelligently in the tackle for Simpson-Daniel to finish from just a metre out on the left-hand touchline. Burns pulled his conversion to the left of the posts to leave the score 11-0 in the away team’s favour.

Connacht bounced back within minutes as O’Connor launched a huge garryowen. Lawson’s attempted catch went loose and captain Duffy was on to the bouncing ball in a flash. He stepped the tackle of fullback Morgan to dive over just to the left of the uprights. O’Connor added the simple conversion and Connacht were back to 11-7.

That score gave Connacht a visible lift as Muldoon broke from the restart and then McSharry made big yards with a bustling carry. McCrea then measured a beautiful kick into touch inside Gloucester’s 22 and suddenly it was Connacht taking the game to the visitors. McCarthy pinched Scott Lawson’s throw to the lineout and Connacht shifted the ball wide. The move broke down as McSharry knocked on but at least Connacht were showing the ability to threaten the Gloucester defence.

The half almost finished with a second Gloucester try as Henry Trinder dinked a kick over the Connacht defence. Sharples got to the bouncing ball behind Connacht’s try line, but the TMO ruled that he had touched the ball down on the dead ball line. Connacht went in at the break trailing by four points but with a strong wind behind them in the second half they could expect to put pressure on Gloucester.

The Gloucester pack, pictured in action against Toulouse, got on top in the second-half. Photo via Pierre-Selim

A positive start by Connacht after half-time led to O’Connor reducing the deficit with a penalty on the 22, slightly to the right of the posts. But the western province failed to build on that score as Gloucester got firmly on top in a low-scoring second-half. Gloucester enjoyed a period of sustained territory as they repeatedly went to their maul in an effort to grind down the Connacht resistance. With John Muldoon to the fore, Connacht repelled the Gloucester efforts but each time they got themselves into good positions, their lack of accuracy in basic skills let them down.

First, neat interplay between Tonetti and replacement Fetu’u Vainikolo was spoiled by a spilled ball. Then a Vainikolo knock-on from a Gloucester clearance allowed the Aviva Premiership side back into the Connacht half. Muldoon won a fantastic turnover to end that Gloucester attack and O’Connor gave Connacht good field position. Substitute hooker Adrian Flavin hit his man from the lineout and the Connacht maul went forward. But Eoin McKeon took the ball on and was turned over as he became isolated. Once again, a promising position wasted for Connacht.

When referee Neil Paterson caught Connacht offside under their own posts, Burns gave Gloucester a four-point lead with his third successful penalty. With the score out to 14-10, it meant Connacht would have to come up with a try to avoid their ninth defeat in a row. Muldoon’s turnover gave them one last chance but in truth it never looked likely.

Connacht now have to travel to Gloucester for the return leg of this double-header next weekend. They simply have to cut down on the amount of errors they are making, both individual and collective, if they are to end this awful streak before it comes to double figures. Unsuccessful lineouts, knock-ons, missed kicks and lack of composure in promising positions are killing Connacht. Apart from the 36-10 loss to Toulouse, Connacht are not losing these matches by big margins. If they can cut out even some of the errors then these margins will start to turn in their favour. That didn’t happen here and Connacht missed out on a good chance to finally record a win.