Harlequins crushed Castres in Pool 2 of the Europeans Champions Cup, but the Londoners efforts were still not enough to keep their hopes of a last eight finish alive. Although they scored seven tries and secured a bonus point at the Stade Pierre - Antoine in France, the tournament is now over for them. Wasps nicked a crucial draw against Leinster to deny Qiuns a quarter-final place and relegate them to third place in Pool 2.

Castres came into the final group round with low self-esteem, with no chance of making the knockout stages, which is a gloomy state of affairs for the team who was the Top 14 finalists from last season and the 2013 French champions.

Harlequins made a flying start with Joe Marler and Charlie Walker scoring tries in the opening 25 minutes of the game. Scrum-half Danny Care's try was converted just before half-time, in the 40th minute of the match. Nick Evans was in fine kicking mood as he took the conversions, kicking all efforts successfully.

The hosts managed two tries and conversions before the interval; one try came from scrum-half Antoine Duport topped up by Julien Dumora's conversion. Romain Cabannes scored the second try and Dumora topped it up again;

The Quins had a 21-14 lead at the interval.

It was all one-way traffic in the second half as the Londoners dominated a weak Castres defence. Jack Clifford got an early try in the 48th minute, which set the tone for a rampant performance by the Quins who soon added another two tries.

In the 67th minute Scotland international Johnnie Beattie took advantage of a poor Harlequins scrum, and drove over for a late consolation try for the French hosts.

Harlequins then replied with a final try of their own, which earned them a bonus point, but was not enough to secure second spot in the group despite a brave effort.

They are now left to ponder hard over their results in the previous rounds, and the dramatic loss at home to Wasps last week. And, as they no longer feature in Europe, the Londoners should hopefully turn their focus to ensuring they make the Premiership knockout stages.