Champions Cup: Bordeaux v Ulster

Ulster take on Bordeaux and a certain Ian Madigan in their opening Champions Cup Pool 5 fixture

Patrick Madden Sun, Oct 16
LIVE: Champions Cup: Bordeaux v Ulster

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  • Good afternoon!

    The Champions Cup is only a couple of days old but it is already looking like the provinces are going to enjoy a far better campaign this time round compared to the misery of last year.

    Leinster set the ball rolling with a comfortable win against Castres yesterday before Connacht put the mighty Toulouse to the sword in Galway.

    Next up Pro 12 table-toppers Ulster rake on Ian Madigan's Bordeaux as the Stade Chaban-Delmas. A Sunday in south-west France? Not the worst assignment in the world for Les Kiss and his men.

    We'll be bringing you all the action from this game and then again later on as Munster take on Racing 92.

    Come on!  


    BORDEAUX BÈGLES:  Jean-Marcellin Buttin; Adam Ashley-Cooper, Jean-Baptiste Dubié, Romain Lonca, Blair Connor; Ian Madigan, Yann Lesgourgues; Jefferson Poirot, Clement Maynadier, Vadim Cobilas, Jandré Marais (capt), Cyril Cazeaux, Luke Jones, Hugh Chalmers, Loann Goujon.

    Replacements: Ole Avei, Sébastien Taofifenua, Marc Clerc, Tom Palmer, Marco Tauleigne, Baptiste Serin,  Lionel Beauxis, Metuisela Talebulamaijaina.

    ULSTER RUGBY:  Jared Payne; Andrew Trimble (capt), Luke Marshall, Stuart Olding, Craig Gilroy; Paddy Jackson, Ruan Pienaar;  Andy Warwick, Rory Best, Rodney Ah You, Alan O’Connor, Franco Van Der Merwe, Iain Henderson, Clive Ross, Sean Reidy.

    Replacements: Rob Herring, Kyle McCall, Ross Kane, Pete Browne, Roger Wilson, Paul Marshall, Jacob Stockdale,  Rob Lyttle.

  • Today's battle of the outhalves will be fascinating, especially given the performance of Joey Carbery for Leinster yesterday in the absence of Johnny Sexton.

    Paddy Jackson is now cemented as Sexton's Ireland understudy, and he enjoyed a fine tour to South Africa in the summer. But while Ian Madigan might now be off the domestic scene he is still in the frame for the 10 jersey.

    Madigan has spoken to Gavin Cummiskey about adapting to life in the Top 14, you can read that HERE.

  • The teams have finally emerged out of the tunnel, which is apparently the longest in Europe. It takes two whole minutes to make it out onto the pitch.

    There's a celebrity kick before the real thing - the drop out taken by none other than Rory McIlroy. He chips it nice and straight.

  • Ian Madigan has the ball in hand - and we're off!
  • 1 min: It's a wide pitch in Bordeaux which could play into Ulster's hands. They've made an untidy start though, with Bordeaux's physicality up front in evidence early on. A loose pass from Pienaar puts Jackson under pressure but he recovers.
  • 3 min: The hosts have a penalty and Madigan has the chance to give Bordeaux an early lead. Good kick.


  • 5 min: Excellent pressure-releasing kick from Pienaar on the right, clearing play up to halfway where the hosts will have a lineout.
  • 6 min: Slick ball off the top and Madigan's dink over the defensive line is gathered by Lonca. Confident start from the Irish outhalf and his backline.
  • 7 min: Scrum Ulster inside their 22 on the far side. They have to reset with the pitch cutting up badly - apparently there's a fungus issue. Scrum penalty Ulster which Jackson clears for a good touch.
  • 9 min: Good Ulster lineout ball and Jackson tries a flat crossfield kick but asks a bit too much of Gilroy whose toes are in touch when he gathers.
  • 9 min: Quick ball off the top for Madigan to spread. Buttin kicks in behind and Gilroy can only boot into touch as he comes scampering across to cover.
  • 10 min: Bordeaux maul and they grind towards the Ulster line but it's good defensive work to keep them out. Ulster scrum on the five.
  • 11 min: Pienaar tries an obviously crooked feed which hits the prop and the ball is stuck near the tunnel. Nobody hooks anymore!! Better second time round and after a couple of phases Pienaar releases upfield.
  • 13 min: Madigan shows good hands and then kicks in behind again but Payne covers excellently. Ulster work it left and Marshall clears up the flank where Madigan covers and clears.
  • 14 min: Bordeaux break down the right through Dubie who cuts inside. The hosts move it left where another attempted stab through runs out for an Ulster lineout.
  • 17 min: Lovely midfield break from Jackson and Ulster have their first attacking platform. They run out of space on the left and the ball goes loose but Marshall cleans up well. Pienaar is savvy at the breakdown and draws a penalty with a Bordeaux player offside. Jackson bumps the penalty up the touchline.

  • 19 min: Bordeaux scrum under their posts and they put in a good shunt, the ball quickly recycled to Lesgourgues who clears well.
  • 20 min: Ulster attack down the right with Trimble chipping ahead and chasing. Connor is across to cover but he is quickly gobbled up by red shirts and Ulster win the scrum on the Bordeaux 22.
  • TRY ULSTER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Well executed Ulster score. They win the scrum and move infield. Pienaar picks and works the shortside, feeding Trimble on a perfect inside line and he motors over the line.

    Jackson converts.


  • 23 min: Ulster straight back on the front foot and they have men over on the right but Henderson spills it forward.
  • 24 min: Good work around the fringes from Henderson scragging scrumhalf Lesgourges and he tries to escape at the base.
  • 25 min: Ulster have the ball in midfield but it's turned over by Bordeaux, who are a mile offside. They move it and Buttin nearly breaks the line off a deep run. Ulster can breathe when they are awarded a penalty which is sent out for a good touch.
  • 26 min: Ulster win their lineout ball and run up the phases, but they are static and narrow and fail to make much impression on the Bordeaux 22 with the hosts counter-rucking well.
  • 28 min: Bordeaux making yards and a big clearout sees them into the Ulster half - but Chalmers loses the ball forward in the next phase.
  • 30 min: Madigan tries one of his trademark fizzing flat passes wide but Trimble reads it like a book and is up in a flash to snot the receiver Lonca.
  • 31 min: Scrum penalty for Ulster after good work by Ah You, Jackson finding touch deep inside the 22.
  • 32 min: Ulster maul infield from the lineout before attacking the shortside again through Payne. Bordeaux do well to slow it down again but the visitors retain possession.
  • 33 min: Ulster engineer a two on one on the far side through Olding and Trimble but the try scorers' ball back inside to Jackson is poor.
  • 36 min: Ulster possession in the Bordeaux half and Payne straightens up, crashing into the 22. Ulster are on the front foot, Pienaar picks and snipes, with a desperate tug on his shirt just stopping him short of the line. The forwards pile in but there is a knock on.
  • Some very sad news coming through that Munster's Anthony Foley has died overnight.
  • 39 min: A Jackson penalty from under the posts has increased Ulster's lead.


  • The IRFU have released a statement regarding the sudden death of Anthony Foley:

    “It is with deep regret that the Irish Rugby Football Union and Munster Rugby must advise of the passing overnight of Munster Rugby head coach Anthony Foley, at the team hotel in Paris.

    “Munster Rugby management are liaising directly with Anthony’s family and will provide them with any assistance and support required.

    “The IRFU and Munster Rugby pass on our deepest sympathies to all of Anthony’s family and friends and ask for privacy for the family at this sad time.

    “As a mark of respect to Anthony and his family and and to support players, management and staff, Muster Rugby have requested that today’s match against Racing 92 be rescheduled.

    “Munster Rugby thank Racing 92, EPCR, broadcasters and partners, and the many fans who travelled to Paris for their understanding and support at this time.”

  • The teams are back out for the second half in Bordeaux.
  • 47 min: Good start to the half from Ulster, the backs seeing plenty of the ball. Olding is released down the right and makes good ground up towards the Bordeaux 22.
  • 44 min: A grubber through puts Bordeaux on the front foot and they have a penalty just outside the Ulster 10-metre.

    Madigan will go for goal, this will be Bordeaux's first points for a while. Good kick.


  • 48 min: Bordeaux win a lineout and muscle their way up to the Ulster 22, but the visitors countr-ruck well and manage to slow things down. Bordeaux retain it though and make good yards around the fringes with an advantage coming.
  • 50 min: They move it left and another fizzed pass from Madigan is read well, Payne up to tackle Connor. Ulster turn the ball over and clear.
  • 51 min: Quick ball off the top and Trimble puts in a mammoth hit in midfield. Ulster have a scrum on their own 22.
  • 53 min: Ross Kane conceded the scrum penalty, easy chance for Madigan to pull Bordeaux within a point, and he slots it.


  • 54 min: Ashley-Cooper breaks from deep and Bordeaux are awarded a penalty, which Beauxis sticks into the corner.
  • 55 min: Bordeaux set up the maul from the lineout but Ulster counter well and clear downfield, where they win a penalty on halfway.

    Great strike from Jackson.


  • 62 min: Ulster concede a penalty after Bordeaux get great hang on a box kick and they have a lineout deep in the Ulster half. They move it left and a flat ball from Beauxis goes loose. Ulster press and Marshall puts a big tackle on Buttin, lifting and twisting him in the air. The crowd aren't happy, but it's just a penalty.
  • 63 min: Good maul from Bordeaux and they get up to the five metre. The hosts are hammering away but Ulster manage to force the turnover and clear.
  • 65 min: Dominant spell for Bordeaux, racking up the phases deep in the Ulster 22. The visitors remain resolute however. Eventually Beauxis looks to move it wide with a chip out to Buttin and he is forced into touch by Payne and Gilroy.
  • 67 min: Ulster have a five-metre scrum to defend on the far side, and they hold Bordeaux firm but concede the penalty in the next phase, Pete Browne pinged. Bordeaux will go for another scrum.
  • 69 min: Bordeaux are camped on the Ulster line and trying to hammer their way over. Avei thinks he has the score but he was held up.  
  • 71 min: Excellent counter-rucking from Ulster and Bordeaux decide to move it. Beauxis spots a gap and his offload out of the tackle is spilled forward by Dubie.
  • 72 min: Absolute chaos on the Ulster line, as the ball goes loose and Pienaar flicks it to Jackson who sees his kicked blocked. The ball won't drop for Bordeaux, who have a penalty on the five metre after a frantic, scrappy period of play. Poor exit strategy from Ulster and they are under big pressure again.
  • TRY BORDEAUX!!!!!!!!

    Bordeaux turn the screw and Taofifenua shows ridiculous strength to peel off and touch the ball down with three Ulster tacklers trying to drag him into touch. Ulster finally broken.

    Beauxis pushes the conversion.



    What a break from Bordeaux, Talebulamajaina breaking from deep and scything inside. He kicks ahead and shows searing pace to gather the ball. Jackson tackles and he offloads to Serin who is tackled by Reidy. Replays show there's no grounding - but Reidy's tackle was early. A penalty try is given, and Reidy is in the bin.

    Beauxis converts.


  • 78 min: Ulster running out of time but a slick move from the backs sees Payne carry into the Bordeaux 22. They move it back across the field and the ball slows down slightly, but Ulster continue to hammer away.
  • TRY BORDEAUX!!!!!!

    Ulster's take a quick tap when a penalty would have secured a bonus point. The ball then goes loose and Beauxis moves it wide to Connor who burns nearly the full length of the pitch to score.

    Beauxis converts.