Wasps 25-27 Clermont Auvergne: French side book their place in the quarter finals of the Champions Cup
Wasps 25-27 Clermont Auvergne: French side book their place in Champions Cup quarter-finals after Camille Lopez dramatically ended Kotaro Matsushima’s attempt at the Ricoh Arena at the last minute
- Camille Lopez from Clermont Auvergne converted with the last kick of the race
- Paolo Odogwu showed an impressive game despite the defeat of Wasps
- Sebastien Bezy and Peni Ravai scored the other tries for the French side
- The victory gave the visitors an 11th quarter final of the Champions Cup
Paolo Odogwu was seconds away from stealing the headlines. This was supposed to be a famous day for the winger and his fellow wasps, but in the end, it was the match officials everyone was talking about.
Wasps were robbed of a famous victory.
In the 84th minute, Clermont’s Kotaro Matsushima fired over to score the winning try. It was so late in the game that the TV game official might have packed up his screens and gone home.
Kotaro Matsushima scored a crucial last minute attempt for Clermont Auvergne at the Ricoh Arena
Dan Robson was blocked in the run, before Morgan Parra’s pass to Fritz Lee drove two meters further. All this took place right in front of the linesman, but neither incident was sent for review.
Lee Blackett’s exhausted players fell desperately to the floor. They had fought bravely against Clermont’s team of giants after three attempts were ruled out in the first half.
Frank Murphy’s TMO intervened regularly during the game, but failed to overrule Peni Ravai’s attempt, which was clearly stopped by Odogwu in the 20th minute.
Camille Lopez celebrates with teammates after his conversion sealed a spot in the quarterfinals
“It’s a bit frustrating,” Blackett said in one of the season’s understatements.
‘If things don’t go your way, they don’t go your way.
‘I thought there was a possible crossing at the end when he ran into his own player, but I was a long way from the other attempt. It didn’t look like the ball had hit me, but that wasn’t why we lost the game. We have put ourselves in a position to win without involving the referees. ‘
Paolo Odogwu van Wespen delivered an impressive performance despite the lost effort of his team
This was Wasps’ sixth consecutive defeat at the Ricoh Arena, but on his first start in three months, Odogwu gave the home side the lead after five minutes and completed a nice first stage strike move.
A break from the untouchable Damian Penaud saw Sebastien Bezy level the scores.
Ravai and Josh Bassett then exchanged attempts before half-time, with Wasps taking advantage of a dominant lineout platform when Ben Harris ran over from close range in the 55th minute.
But this was a long way from the bounty-filled days of Wasps in 2020. Clermont removed more super-sized threats from the bank and, with Zach Kibirige in sin, controversially crushed their hosts with the final act.
George Moala (right) collides with Wasps’ Brad Shields in the Champions Cup match
Josh Bassett (left) scored an impressive try for the home team in the first half of the game