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Munster defeat could prove costly

Munster Rugby

Munster 5 , Glasgow 22
THERE were a lot of worried faces in Thomond Park tonight with Glasgow Warriors leading 22-5 at the break in the RaboDirect Pro 12 League. Despite a better effort in the second half the side could not turn this one around and the defeat could yet cost them a home semi-final.
As the clocked clicked up to 54 minutes and no further score on the board, the prospect of a Munster recovery dimmed. The 17 point deficit was becoming difficult to reduce and Glasgow looked too comfortable to blow this one.
Munster came in waves but the Scots were holding firm with 20 minutes to go. There were a lot of fancy feet out there tonight but that usual efficiency was lacking for the reds.
A fine break by Kilcoyne failed to reap reward on 70 minutes but it was ┬áby then clear that the Warriors were on their way to a first win at this venue since 2008. It wasn’t that Munster were poor, they had plenty of possession, they attacked for most of the second half but every team has an off-day and on this occasion they were beaten by a better side.

The Glasgow camp was thrilled with their performance with coach Gregor Townsend saying tha it was their best 80 minutes of the season. The result sees Munster go third in the table, a position that would see them play the second placed team away in the sem-finals if that position was to remain to the end of the league proper.

At half time it was Munster 5, Glasgow 22 and no doubt coach Rob Penney had some strong words for his players at the break as they trailed 22-5 to the visitors.

The Warriors led after seven minutes when Jonny Gray barged over and Duncan Weir kicked the conversion. A Weir penalty two minutes later put the Scots 10-0 and further tries from Sean Maitland and Josh Strauss, this one converted by Weir, gave Glasgow that 22-5 lead.

On the injury front, ┬áboth JJ Hanrahan and BJ Botha had to go off. Hanrahan’s injury is of slight concern and, according to Rob Penney, they will not know the full extent of it until early next week.

Munster: Felix Jones, Gerhard van den Heever, Keith Earls, James Downey, Simon Zebo, JJ Hanrahan, Conor Murray, John Ryan, Duncan Casey, BJ Botha, Donncha O’Callaghan, Dave Foley, CJ Stander, Sean Dougall, James Coughlan Capt. Replacements: Quentin MacDonald, Dave Kilcoyne, Alan Cotter, Billy Holland, Paddy Butler, Duncan Williams, Ian Keatley, Johne Murphy.

Glasgow Warriors, Peter Murchie; Sean Maitland,, Alex Dunbar, Finn Russell, Tommy Seymour; Duncan Weir, Chris Cusiter (Captain); Gordon Reid, Dougie Hall, Jon Welsh, Tim Swinson, Jonny Gray, Josh Strauss, Chris Fusaro, Ryan Wilson. Replacements, Pat MacArthur, Jerry Yanuyanut, Geoff Cross, Leone Nakarawa, Rob Harley, Henry Pyrgos, Peter Horne, Richie Vernon.

Referee, Nigel Owens, WRU.

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