An end worthy of a meeting of this type in a match that always had an uncertain outcome but that Exeter managed to unbalance in key moments of the night at Bristol’s Ashton Gate. At each thrust of Racing 92 he responded quickly and in the end he endured stoic when he was against his ingoal. It achieves the Champions Cup for the first time in its history by winning 31-27 and leaves it to the Parisians with the bitter taste of the third lost final.
With Juan Imhoff as the starter and author of a try, the French had bumps at some key points in the game. The English returned to shine fiercely from their pack of forwards to reach the ingoal in the final meters. Thus landed the conquests of Luke Cowan-Dickie and Sam Simmonds against a French team that could not find the spaces.
The 3 in the background were the most outstanding in Racing 92 that first with Simon Zebo and then with a great play by Juan Imhoff in the last meters, they managed to put their team in a game. However, the English in the first half epilogue were going to attack again with the forwards and Harry Williams entered the handsome ingoal for the 21-12 set with the 3 conversions of Joe Simmonds.
Simon Zebo appeared again at 3 minutes of the complement to leave Racing there, but 2 minutes later Henry Slade erased the smile of the French after an interception that Joy Simmonds took her to seven points. Camile Chat gave life to the Albicelestes and Maxime Machenaud with the conversion and then a penalty left the score at 1 point.
In the end Racing 92 tried but Exter defended tooth and nail every attack from the forwards in the last meters. He tried the backs but it didn’t work either and from there he got a penalty that put him in the opposite half and then gave Joy Simmonds the chance to score the last 3 points before the end of the game. Exeter screamed champion for the first time and is the new king of Europe.
EXETER (31): 15- Stuart Hogg, 14- Jack Nowell, 13- Henry Slade, 12- Ian Whitten, 11- Tom O’Flaherty, 10- Joe Simmonds (c), 9- Jack Maunder, 8- Sam Simmonds, 7- Jacques Vermeulen, 6- Dave Ewers, 5- Jonny Hill, 4- Jonny Gray, 3- Harry Williams, 2- Luke Cowan-Dickie, 1- Alec Hepburn.
CHANGES: 16´ Tomas Francis, Ben Moon, Jack Yandle and Jannes Kirsten by Harry Williams, Hepburn, Cowan-Dickie and Vermeulen, 19´ Sam Skinner and Ollie Devoto by Gray and Whitten, 25´ Sam hidalgo-Clyne by Maunder.
RACING 92 (27): 15- Simon Zebo, 14- Louis Dupichot, 13- Virimi Vakatawa, 12- Henry Chavancy (c), 11- Juan Imhoff, 10- Finn Russell, 9- Teddy Iribaren, 8- Antonie Claassen, 7- Fabien Sanconnie, 6- Wenceslas Lauret, 5- Dominic Bird, 4- Bernard Le Roux, 3- Georges Henri Colombe, 2- Camille Chat, 1- Eddy Ben Arous.
CHANGES: ST: 1´Maxime Machenaud for Iribaren, 11´ Hassane Kollingar Teddy Baubigny and Ali Oz for Arous, Chat and Colombe, 25´ Kurtley Beale for Zebo, 27´ Donnacha Ryan for Le Roux and 36´ Boris Palu for Claasen.
POINTS IN THE FIRST TIME: 8´ Try by Luke Cowan-Dickie converted by Joe Simmonds (E), 16´ Try by Sam Simmonds converted by Joe Simmonds (E), 20´ Try by Simon Zebo (R), 32´ Try by Juan Imhoff converted by Finn Russell (R) and 40´ Try by Harry Williams converted by Joe Simmonds (E).
Partial result: Exeter 21-12 Racing 92.
POINTS IN THE SECOND TIME: 3´Try by Simon Zebo (R), 5´ Try by Henry Slade converted by Joe Simmonds (E), 10´Try by Camile Chat converted by Maxime Machenaud (R), 25´ Penalty by Maxime Machenaud (R) and 80´ Penalty kick from Joe Simmonds (E).
ADMONISHED: ST: 31´ Tomas Francis.
Stadium: Ashton Gate, Bristol.
Referee: Nigel Owens.
Assistants: Mike Adamson and Craig Evans.
TMO: Ian Davies.