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Gloucester qualify at a canter

Challenge Cup holders Gloucester booked their place in the knock-out stages of this year's competition with a 20-10 triumph over La Rochelle at Kingsholm.

The Cherry and Whites have won all five of their Pool Four matches in Europe's second-tier competition this season and cruised through with a game to spare.

Robert Cook and Billy Twelvetrees scored the tries for Gloucester, while Greig Laidlaw converted both and booted two penalties as they secured a home draw in the last eight.

Worcester will go into the final game of the pool with no hope of progressing after they lost 22-15 at home to Zebre.

Zebre had a slender 13-7 lead at the break and they kept their hosts at arm's length with Edward Padovani kicking three late penalties, despite Dean Hammond scoring a late try for Worcester.

London Irish have the odds stacked against them as well after they lost for the third time in the competition, going down 28-18 at home to Grenoble.

Jonathan Wisniewski's boot was the Exiles' undoing as he converted an 11-point haul which leaves them five points behind second-placed Edinburgh in Pool Five and needing results to go their way if they are to advance.

Newcastle slipped up in Pool One, slumping to a 24-7 defeat at the hands of bottom side Enisei-STM. David Kacharava scored a brace of tries as the Russian side cruised home.

Montpellier ran riot in a seven-try rout of Calvisano in Pool Three, winning 47-7 to give them the all important third-best runners-up record overall and the last qualifying berth.


From Belfast Telegraph