Yato Shines For Clermont In European Champions Cup Opener

Fiji Airways Flying Fijians No.8 Peceli Yato scored two quick tries for Clermont as they thrashed Harlequins 53-21 and earned a bonus point in the European Champions Cup.

Yato’s quick tries followed Fijian born- France winger Alivereti Raka’s opener before Tom Lawday crossed for Quins. Isaia Toeava’s try was replied to by Elia Elia, but Raka’s second was followed by George Moala.

James Lang grabbed Quins’ third and while Mike Tadjer scored late on for Clermont, the English side fell short of a fourth try and a bonus point.

Clermont was quickly into the lead through Morgan Parra’s early penalty and had their first try when Raka crossed after 11 minutes.

Raka then set up the first of Yato’s tries when he collected and then offloaded Camille Lopez’ sublime cross kickback to Yato, who scored his second soon after as Clermont took a 22-0 lead. Lawday’s converted try gave Quins some hope, but the home side were 25-7 ahead at half-time following another Parra penalty.

Toeava’s try extended the lead and ensured the bonus point for Clermont early in the second half, but Elia soon powered over for Quins from a maul.

Further incisive kicking from Lopez gave Raka and Moala the chance to cross, but a brilliant run from Quins’ Gabriel Ibitoye allowed Lang in to score arguably the try of the game.

Clermont passed the 50-point mark in the closing stages when substitute hooker Tadjer barged over from a line-out.

Other Fijians who played were Apisai Naqalevu for Clermont while Tevita Cavubati played for Harlequins.


Ratu Tagive helped nervy Glasgow Warriors held off a second-half fightback by Sale Sharks to open their European  Champions Cup campaign with a 13-7 win.

DTH van der Merwe’s try at the end of the first half was rewarded for a dominant display as Sale struggled to make inroads into Warriors’ 22.

Sale was better after the break and cut the deficit to six points after Coenie Oosthuizen’s try.

That kept the hosts on edge but Sale could not find another score. The visitors were left to rue a poor first 40 minutes in what was their first Champions Cup match since the 2016-17 season.

Flying Fijians Nikola Matawalu and Mesulame Dolokoto were rested


Flying Fijians fullback Kini Murimurivalu scored a try for La Rochelle but it was not enough as they went down 31-12 to Exeter Chiefs in the European Champions Cup competition.

Converted tries from Dave Dennis and Tom O’Flaherty gave the Chiefs a 14-0 lead at half-time, but La Rochelle had a Vincent Rattez try disallowed.

Geoffrey Doumayrou crossed for La Rochelle after the break, but Henry Slade’s interception try restored Exeter’s 14-point lead.

Sam Simmonds secured the bonus, while Murimurivalu crossed late on. Murimurivalu’s Fijian team-mate Levani Botia toiled hard at second five eight.

The Chiefs took the lead in the pool. Two clashes after only nine minutes when lock forward Dennis followed up a powerful run from prop Harry Williams and winger O’Flaherty.

Fly-half Joe Simmonds kicked the first of his 11 points to give Exeter a 7-0 lead, but they looked to have been pegged back when Rattez crossed after a tap penalty only for the try to be disallowed for a forward pass.

O’Flaherty dived in at the corner after a brilliant long pass from Ian Whitten, and Exeter took their 14-0 lead into the break after the home side opted out of two possible penalty kicks.


Jonah Holmes grabbed four tries as Leicester marked their first appearance in the European Challenge Cup with an emphatic 41-20 bonus-point win over Pau.

Fijian-born Ifereimi Boladau was at No.8 for Tigers while Pau fielded former Fijian 7s winger Watisoni Votu while Jale Vatubua was rested.

Boladau, a former Suva Grammar School student is loaned to the Tigers from the Nottingham club.

Fly-half Ford was one of five Tigers who returned to club duty after helping England reach the World Cup final.

The international quality told as Ford set up one of two first-half tries for Holmes to add to George Worth’s score as Tigers built a telling 24-10 lead.

Winger Holmes doubled his tally as the hosts eased past the French side.