A superb brace of first half tries from star man Alex Wootton set Connacht on the road to a bonus-point victory over Cardiff Blues at the Sportsground tonight. 

The win, Connacht's second bonus-point triumph over Welsh opposition in the month of February, solidifies the westerners' second place position in Pool B, seven points clear of Scarlets in third. 

They fell behind early to a pushover try from Rhys Carre, Jack Carty responding with a couple of penalties before Jason Tovey kicked a goal to stretch the visitors lead to 10-6 by the half-hour mark.


It was in the final few minutes before half-time that man of the match Wootton, now the top try-scorer in the competition, made his move. 

The ex-Munster player scored two brilliantly taken tries on 35 minutes and then with the clock in the red before half-time to give the home side a 20-10 advantage at the break. The second, in particular, was a terrific score, Wootton dodging a tackler with a wonderful step, jinking inside and racing in to dot the ball down in-goal. 

Nerves became more frayed when Corey Domachowski heaved over for the Blues on 63 minutes, reducing the deficit to three points as the game entered its final quarter. 

Connacht players celebrate Jarrad Butler's crucial try with 13 minutes remaining

However, Connacht rustled up the decisive score four minutes later, Jarrad Butler touching down off the back of a lethal rolling maul to give the hosts crucial breathing space entering the closing stages.

While the conversion missed, late substitute Abraham Papali'i made sure of the game, and the bonus point, barrelling over from close range with three minutes left on the clock. 

Andy Friend's side now head to the north of Italy, hoping to make it three wins on the trot away to Benetton Treviso in the Stadio Communale de Monigo next Friday.