European Champions Cup

Tributes paid to Foley as Clermont and Bordeaux start with wins

Tributes were paid to Munster head coach Anthony Foley as Clermont Auvergne and Bordeaux-Begles started their European Champions Cup campaigns with victories over Exeter Chiefs and Ulster respectively on a sombre day for rugby union.

Munster's clash with Racing 92 was postponed on Sunday as a mark of respect after former Ireland international Foley died suddenly aged 42 at the team hotel in Paris overnight. 

Garrett Fitzgerald, Munster's chief executive, described Foley as a "true rugby great" in one of many tributes, with fans paying their respects in the French capital.

There was a minute's silence before the Pool 5 match at Sandy Park, where top 14 leaders Clermont coasted to a 35-8 bonus-point win.

Clermont were beaten 31-14 at Exeter last year, but it was a very different story this time around as Wesley Fofana scored two of five tries for the two-time runners-up.

Exeter reached the quarter-finals of Europe's premier club competition last year, but they were blown away by a rampant Clermont outfit after Gareth Steenson's early penalty.

Clermont took a commanding 21-3 advantage into the half-time break after Julien Bardy touched down in the left corner before a Morgan Parra up and under resulted in Noa Nakaitaci touching down and Fofana took an inside pass from Camille Lopez to dot down at the end of a fine move.

Parra converted on all three occasions and added the extras again following a score from Nick Abendanon soon after the interval which sealed the bonus point.

Flip van der Merwe was sent to the sin bin for persistent foul play but lively centre Fofana surged through for his second try, with Sam Hill scoring the Premiership side's solitary try right at the end.

Bordeaux had earlier produced a stunning late fightback to get the better of UIster 28-13 in the other Pool 5 match.

Ulster led 13-9 seven minutes from time courtesy of an Andrew Trimble try and eight points from the boot of Paddy Jackson, but the hosts scored three late tries to claim a dramatic win at Stade Chaban-Delmas on a day which the on-field action was overshadowed by the passing of Foley.