European Challenge Cup
Northampton hammer Bristol
December 6, 2008
Northampton's Paul Diggin scores one of his two tries during their Franklin's Gardens romp
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Northampton ran in 10 tries on their way to a thumping 66-3 victory over Bristol in their European Challenge Cup Pool 2 clash at Franklin's Gardens.
Chris Ashton led the way with a hat-trick of tries while Paul Diggin and Mark Easter grabbed two apiece. Roger Wilson, Bruce Reihana and Jon Clarke also dotted down while Stephen Myler kicked five conversions and Carlos Spencer three. A penalty from Adrian Jarvis ensured Bristol avoided a whitewash.
The game did not start well for the visitors with Matt Salter yellow carded in the first minute and Northampton took advantage in his absence with Diggin grabbing his first try and Myler his first conversion. Wilson added their second midway through the half, again converted by Myler, before Jarvis offered some hope with his penalty.
Easter and Ashton crossed before the break with Myler ensuring the maximum on both occasions.
Reihana was the next to dot down after the break and Myler converted before making way for Spencer. Ashton crossed for his second on the hour mark with Spencer adding the extras before Diggin was in again a couple of minutes later.
Replacement Clarke was the next to get on the scoresheet and there was still time for Ashton and Easter to go over again.
The victory was Northampton's third successive bonus point win in this season's competition and leave them on course for a quarter-final berth.
Northampton Saints: (28) 66
Bristol: (3) 3
Northampton Saints: B Reihana [capt], C Ashton, C Mayor, J Downey (J Clarke 60), P Diggin, S Myler (C Spencer 52), L Dickson, S Tongauiha, D Hartley (P Shields 66), E Murray (B Stewart 41), I Fernandez Lobbe (A Rae 52), C Day, M Easter, S Gray, R Wilson (M Hopley 52)
Bristol Rugby: V Lilo, T Arscott, L Eves (L Robinson 61), K Maggs, A Elliott, A Jarvis (C Ashwin 61), G Beveridge (H Thomas 58), M Irish, S Linklater (D Blaney 61), P Bracken (R Hogan 61), M Sambucetti (N Budgett 61), D Attwood, M Salter [capt], R Pennycook (A To'oala 41), J Phillips
Discipline: Yellow Card - M Salter (1)
Referee: Romain Poite (France)
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