Heineken Cup Pool 3: Toulouse off to winning start
Last Updated: 11/10/13 11:03pm
Four-time champions Toulouse opened their Heineken Cup campaign with an emphatic 38-5 victory over Zebre at the Stade Ernest Wallon stadium.
Toulouse, who had lost just once at home in their previous 14 matches, had been expected to start off with a comfortable win against the Italian minnows and so it proved as they ran in six tries to Zebre's one.
Yoann Huget and Maxime Medard both scored twice for the victors with their fellow France internationals Gregory Lamboley and Yannick Nyanga also on the mark, while Zebre's sole points came from Dion Berryman's try after the interval.
Zebre, who shocked Cardiff Blues in Wales last month having failed to win even once during their debut season in Europe, had the chance to take an early lead, but Tommaso Iannone's eighth-minute penalty attempt sailed wide and after that it was all Toulouse.
The French side scored their first try in the 11th minute through Huget, which was superbly converted by Sebastien Bezy, and seven minutes later the hosts had crossed again through Lamboley.
Bezy failed to add the extras on that occasion and the scrum-half also missed with his next attempt after Huget went over for his second of the night to make it 17-0 after just 21 minutes.
The bonus-point fourth try arrived in the 34th minute through Medard and on that occasion Bezy was on target with his conversion as Toulouse went into the break leading 24-0.
Toulouse needed just four minutes of the second half to extend their lead, Medard scoring and Bezy converting, but Zebre gave their fans something to cheer soon after when New Zealander Berryman touched down a fine effort .
That was as good as it got for the Italian side though as Toulouse ran in a sixth try through Nyanga in the 56th minute, with Jean Pascal Barraque adding the two points to complete the scoring.