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Munster superb as they hold on for bonus point victory

(Munster coach Johaan van Graan will be happy with this performance)
Guinness PRO14 Championship:
Connacht 24, Munster 31
IT was an impressive show by Munster tonight in the Showgrounds in Galway. Their game management was high quality and they were full value for their bonus point victory that puts them on top of their Conference.
To their credit, Connacht had their moments and they fought back bravely to get a losing bonus point. Overall, Munster were the better side and if Gloucester were watching, they will be concerned regarding next Friday night’s Heineken Cup game.
To the man, the red pack put in a terrific shift. They fought like tigers in the loose and in the tight, their lineout was almost faultless and they provided the platform for some very astute kicking options from those behind them.
Connacht took the lead when Tom Farrell ripped the ball from Arno Botha and ran clear to the try line, Jack Harty adding the two points after just ten minutes. The score provided a wake-up call for Munster and Earls set up Peter O’Mahony for a try at the other end, Carbery’s conversion levelling the tie at 7-7 with 16 minutes played.
Dan Goggin was looking sharp and he scored the first of his two tries on 25 minutes, converted by Carbery as Munster went 7-14 clear. Jack Carty slotted over a penalty on the stroke of half time to keep his side in it at the break, 10-14. There was an explosive start to the second half, Tom Farrell sending winger Cian Kelliher clear for Connacht’s second try and Harty’s conversion putting the home side 17-14 to the good.
Connacht lost their way after that, Dan Goggin racing in for his second try, converted by Carbery, to put Munster back in the lead at 17-21. Carbery then hit a purple patch, adding a penalty, a try and a conversion to push the visitors into a 17-31 advantage and the bonus point secured.
Connacht made a late charge, Jack Carty bursting clear down the middle for a well taken try which he also converted and although his side fought tenaciously to get a share of the points, Munster closed out the game with some comfort.
A good performance by Johaan van Graan’s side which augurs well for that Champions Cup game next week-end in Gloucester.
Connacht: Darragh Leader, Cian Kelleher, Tom Farrell, Tom Daly, Matt Healy, Jack Carty, Caolin Blade; Peter McCabe, Dave Heffernan (Capt), Dominic Robertson McCoy, Gavin Thornbury, Quinn Roux, Paul Boyle, Colby Fainga’a, Eoghan Masterson.
Replacements (16-23): Tom McCartney, Maddie Bourke, Finlay Bealham, Ultan Dillane, Cillian Gallagher, Angus Lloyd, David Horwitz, Colm DeBuitlear.
Munster: Andrew Conway; Keith Earls, Chris Farrell, Dan Goggin, Alex Wootton; Joey Carbery, Alby Mathewson; Jeremy Loughman, Niall Scannell, John Ryan; Jean Kleyn, Tadhg Beirne; Peter O’Mahony (C), Tommy O’Donnell, Arno Botha.
Replacements: Kevin O’Byrne, Dave Kilcoyne, Stephen Archer, Billy Holland, CJ Stander, Conor Murray, Tyler Bleyendaal, Sammy Arnold

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