Mark Cueto grabbed a hat-trick to send Sale Sharks storming through to the final of the European Challenge Cup against Pau.
The England wing, over-looked for the British and Irish Lions, proved a point by adding to his brace of tries in the first leg of this semi-final with another three at Edgeley Park.
Charlie Hodgson weighed in with a 24-point including an early try as Sale built on their lead from the first match against the Irish province to book their place in the final on May 21 at Oxford’s Kassam Stadium.
Outside-half Hodgson usually grabs the headlines for his kicking but showed some delightful footwork to round the Connacht defence before hooker Andy Titterrell and wing Steve Hanley both crossed as Sale roared into a 31-9 half-time lead.
Connacht could only manage penalties from the boots of Paul Warwick and Mark McHugh but had no response to the Sharks blistering attack. Not even when they brought on Ireland legend Eric Elwood as a replacement in the last game of his staggering career.
Cueto raced onto Hodgson’s kick to grab his first on 44 minutes before making the most of Sebastien Chabal’s steal in midfield just four minutes later.
Scotland back-row Jason White saw Sale break the half-century before Cueto added the icing with his third try three minutes from time.