Conan hat-trick fires rampant Leinster into quarter-finals


Jack Conan scored a hat-trick as Leinster pummelled 14-man Montpellier 57-3 at the RDS Arena to secure a place in the European Champions Cup quarter-finals.

Number eight Conan was in irrepressible form and played an integral role as the Irish province secured top spot in Pool 4, Montpellier failing to keep pace following the first-half dismissal of Francois Steyn.

Isa Nacewa broke the deadlock before a moment of brilliance saw him run onto his own kick over Steyn and set Conan in to touch down for his first try.

Steyn was dismissed in the 26th minute following a high and late tackle on Jonathan Sexton, the fly-half returning to the action after Nacewa's successful penalty and an exceptional score from Adam Byrne.

The Leinster wing leapt above Montpellier full-back Joffrey Michel to pluck down Luke McGrath's box kick by the sideline, crossing the whitewash after an exchange of passes with Conan.

Conan's second preceded a six-minute spell that bore three tries for the hosts, McGrath and Cian Healy getting in on the act before Conan capitalised on Montpellier's failed kick inside their own 22 for his hat-trick.

Garry Ringrose added further gloss to the scoreline in the closing stages, with Leinster's attention now turning to secure a home quarter-final as one of the top four performers in the pool stage.