The Irish side's knowledge of the conditions - strong winds and inevitable rain - worked well in their favour and they used that in the second half to great effect to smash the visitors from Pretoria, who scored within two minutes and were still sitting handy at the break, with a 10-7 score line to the home side.

The second half was a rout and frankly, a harsh reality in the difference between application and commitment between the sides. The one scored four tries, the other one nil.

The Bull started strongly and scored a try in the second minute and what a five pointer it was. Zak Burger made a clean and decisive break 50 meters out and once he was stopped, the momentum was sustained with good distribution and support runners. Lizo Gqoboka came charging through on a short run and crashed over. Goosen converted and the Pretoria men were 7-0 up.

It took Connacht 15 minutes to respond, and they managed that with a well-taken try by fullback Tiernan O'Halloran. He has his pack to thank though as it was a powerful line-out drive that set things in motion. The Bulls were scattering all over the place and when the ball was recycled and send backwards, some slick passing saw the fullback jog over without a hand laid on him. Jack Carty converted and scored were tied up at 7-7.

Ill-discipline by the Bulls were counterproductive for them, it gave Carty opportunity to kick into their half and force attacking lineouts.

Connacht thought they scored when winger John Porch dotted down, but the TMO ruled the pass to him forward.

The Bulls came close twice, but could not finish promising moves and it was Connacht who scored next. Carty kicked a penalty from close range after the visitors were caught offside at a ruck and the men in green were up 10-7 with five minutes in the half to play.

The Bulls had a late surge, but the half ended with them near the Connacht line, but pinged for holding on.

The home side started the second half with a bang when a sustained attack by the green jerseys resulted in gaps opening up in the Bulls defence. That was all centre Tom Daly needed and he went around a despairing Stravino Jacobs tackle to score his side's second. Carty converted to help his side into a 17-7 lead.

That was 22-7 in no time as Mack Hansen sniped through the Bulls defence with a great 50 meter run to score and although the TMO checked for obstruction by his team-mates, if was ruled as a clear run for the winger, despite objections from the Bulls on being impeded when trying to make a tackle.

There was not a whisper from the visitors ten minutes from the end though as Tom Farrell sliced through the Bulls midfield, beating their attempted tackles with a well angled run. That sealed the match and handed Connacht a bonus point as well. Daly got a second in the last throes of the match as the leaking Bulls defence was found wanting again to complete the dominance Connacht had in the second half.


Connacht 34 (10) - Tries: Tiernan O'Halloran, Tom Daly (2), Mack Hansen, Tom Farrell. Conversions: Jack Carty (3). Penalty Goal: Carty

Vodacom Bulls 7 (7) - Try: Lizo Gqoboka. Conversion: Johan Goosen.