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‘On fire’ Munster send out a warning to the Leicester Tigers

Guinness PRO14 Championship:
Munster 36, Ospreys 10
A MASTER-class from Munster tonight in Irish Independent Park in Cork that will them a welcome boost for the back to back Champions Cup games against Leicester Tigers over the coming two week-ends. The speed of Munster’s play in that opening quarter was quite stunning. The Ospreys could not cope with the continuous offloads and interechanging passing but they can take some consolation from the fact that the winning margin was curtailed in the latter part of the game.
The most difficult part of the night was trying to pick the Munster man of the match. You could have chosen from Keatley, Hart, Holland, O’Donoghue or Cloete but my selection would have been Rory Scannell. They centre is at the peak of his form at present and his intelligent use of the ball, his defence and his power and pace make him one of the best inside centres on this island at the moment.
Munster started as if their careers depended on each individual performance. Ian Keatley kicked them 3-0 up after just four minutes and they led 24-5 at half time with tries from Sam Arnold, Darren Sweetnam and Chris Cloete, all converted by Ian Keatley who continues to show his true form. The Ospreys, who had Will Jones in the sin-bin during Munster’s opening two tries, had their try from left wing Jeff Hassler.
Munster eased off a bit in the second half with Rory Scannell scoring a lovely individual try followed by a Jack O’Donoghue five pointer and Keatley kicking one conversion. The Ospreys had a late try from Will Jones but it mattered little.
Munster: Simon Zebo; Darren Sweetnam, Sam Arnold, Rory Scannell, Alex Wootton; Ian Keatley, James Hart; Liam O’Connor, Rhys Marshall, John Ryan; Jean Kleyn, Billy Holland (C); Jack O’Donoghue, Chris Cloete, Robin Copeland.
Replacements: Kevin O’Byrne, Brian Scott, Stephen Archer, Darren O’Shea, Sean O’Connor, Duncan Williams, JJ Hanrahan, Calvin Nash.
Ospreys: Dan Evans, Hanno Dirksen, Kieron Fonotia, James Hook, Jeff Hassler, Sam Davies, Tom Habberfield; Gareth Thomas, Sam Parry, Dmitri Arhip; Lloyd Ashley, Bradley Davies (Capt); Olly Cracknell, Will Jones, James King. Replacements, Scott Baldwin, Rowan Jenkins, Ma’afu Fia, Rob McCusker, Guy Mercer, Reuben Morgan-Williams, Luke Price, Joe Thomas.

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