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Gregor Townsend rues sloppy start to second half

Published 09/01/2016

Gregor Townsend's Glasgow side were well beaten in France
Gregor Townsend's Glasgow side were well beaten in France

Gregor Townsend was left frustrated after Glasgow Warriors lost control of their own destiny in the European Champions Cup.

Dan Carter kicked 12 points as Racing 92 maintained their unbeaten run and tightened their grip on Pool Three with a bonus-point win.

But defeat at Stade Yves-du-Manoir put a serious dent in Glasgow's hopes of progressing to the quarter-finals.

Leone Nakarawa's second-half try briefly offered a glimmer of hope b ut the power of the Racing pack proved too much as front-row trio Ben Tameifuna, Dimitri Szarzewski and Eddy Ben Arous all crossed before lock Manuel Carizza's injury-time effort clinched the bonus point.

That saw Racing take a seven-point lead over Northampton Saints while third-placed Glasgow must now win both of their remaining ties to be in with a chance of progressing as one of three best runners-up.

Townsend said: "I'm disappointed. We didn't play well as well as we'd intended and we weren't accurate enough.

"It was an opportunity today, with the conditions, the amount of possession we had and breaks we made, we should have done more with that. It's disappointing for the players, a number of whom put in really good displays.

"But I was really disappointed with the opening five minutes of the second half. To give away soft tries from a restart, giving away a scrum then putting ourselves under pressure was disappointing.

"But the reaction after that was good. Leone's try was a good one, and we had another opportunity where we got caught at the base when we got in behind.

"There were points out there. Now the aim is to win our two remaining matches."

French league leaders Racing qualified for the quarter-finals of the Champions Cup for the first time last season and head coach Laurent Travers knows the injury-time bonus point could prove crucial.

Travers said: "We are very satisfied with the win but even more pleased with the bonus point because that could be very important in terms of the classification in the pool and for reaching the quarter-finals. That is our ambition."

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