Jonny Sexton looks to have regained his kicking form in France. INPHO/Harold Cunningham
Kicking Machine

Sexton kicks Racing Metro to second league win of the season

The outhalf was encouraged at the kicking tee by former Ireland teammate Ronan O’Gara.

JONATHAN SEXTON KICKED Racing Metro to their second league victory of the season at Stade Olympique Yves-du-Manoir this evening.

Sexton’s kicking stats have been below par in his initial outings with Racing but he slotted over five penalties and a conversion in a 22-9 home win over Oyonnax.

The Parisian outfit have 18 new faces in the playing staff this season and a new coaching set-up that includes Ronan O’Gara as skills and backs coach. Their victory was achieved in a similar manner to their opening Top 14 success against Brive, steady but unspectacular.

Racing trailed 6-0 after 14 minutes as Conrad Barnard slotted over two penalties. Sexton responded on 16 minutes before Barnard stretched the advantage to six again.

The former Leinster 10 sparked his team into life soon after as he made a 60-metre break upfield. The territorial pressure paid off as Sexton knocked over a simple penalty to make it 9-6 to the visitors. The home side should have led at the break but Masi Matadigo butchered a simple chance as he spilled a Sexton pass forward with an uncontested score beckoning.

The Racing pack exerted its dominance in the second period and Sexton erased the three-point deficit on 43 minutes before chipping over from in front of the posts on 59. The home side’s lead was 15-9 three minutes later when Oyonnax were guilty of illegally bringing down a lineout.

Dimitri Szarzewski thought he had scored a try with 10 minutes to go but the video match official ruled he was not in control as he crashed over the line. Oyonnax, down to 13 men due to late, yellow card offences, could not hold out forever and substitute Virgile Lacombe bulled over at the back of a storming maul 60 seconds after he entered the fray.

Racing pressed for a further score but it was not forthcoming. Sexton lasted the full 80 minutes and will feel he has truly contributed to an important early triumph in his first season abroad.

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