France wing Teddy Thomas scored two tries in a brilliant first-half performance, as Racing 92 reached the Champions Cup final with a 27-22 victory over Munster in Bordeaux.
Thomas was in the sort of scintillating form that saw him score three tries in France’s first two games of the 2018 NatWest 6 Nations, while he also set up Racing’s third score of the afternoon.
That was scored by captain Maxime Machenaud, and there were also starring roles from fellow Bleus Virimi Vakatawa, Wenceslas Lauret and Yannick Nyanga.
Racing also had an Ireland international in their midst, with lock Donnacha Ryan getting one over his old team, which included four Irish Grand Slam winners – Conor Murray, Keith Earls, Peter O’Mahony and CJ Stander.
It took just five minutes until Thomas put Racing ahead at the Stade Chaban-Delmas by scampering into the corner after being set up by Vakatawa.
Ian Keatley pulled back a penalty for Munster, but they were hurt by the same combination on 18 minutes, as Vakatawa burst through a gap down the right before putting Thomas in the clear for his second.
Thomas could have had a hat-trick after 22 minutes when he scythed his way through again only to give the score instead to Machenaud after crossing the try line.
Two Machenaud penalties, either side of half-time, put the Parisians 27-3 up and in complete control, but Munster never gave in and got a try back through another of their Ireland internationals, Simon Zebo.
The Irish side went on to dominate the rest of the match as they desperately tried to find a way back into it.
They did pull back late tries through Rhys Marshall and Andrew Conway, but Racing’s lead proved insurmountable, as they booked their ticket to Bilbao, where they will meet Leinster next month.