Munster’s Encouraging Performance
9th January 2006 By Munster Rugby
Munster produced a determined gutsy performance to inflict defeat on Edinburgh Gunners in Murrayfield on Saturday evening
Munster gave themselves the perfect boost ahead of the resumption of the
Heineken Cup, with victory in Murrayfield by the narrowest margin (18-17) in
the top of the table clash on Saturday evening. It was a victory they richly
deserved – the first time the Gunnners have been beaten this season at Murrayfield – even though they might have had the spoils snatched from their
grasp deep in injury time. Deepin injury time, Edinburgh were awarded a penalty after Ian Dowling was adjudged to have obstructed as Shaun Payne attempted a break-out of his own
half. Thankfully from a Munster point of view, Chris Paterson just didn t have
the range and his attempt dropped short into the grateful and safe hands of
Ronan O Gara.
It was O Gara who set Munster on their way when his crisp flat pass in the seventh minute
sent Trevor Halstead galloping over under the posts and the Cork man added two penalties
that saw Munster lead 13-7 at the break. Edinburgh s try came in first half injury time,from a forward effort, Scott Murray credited with the touchdown.
After an early period of Edinburgh pressure, Munster again assumed control and following a good passage of passing play, initiated by a clever John Kelly break and carried on by Barry Murphy, Kelly took Peter Stringer’s pass to score on the left and push Munster 18-7 clear. b
With Munster now dominating all over the park, misfortune struck, when, with the Edinburgh defence once again stretched to breaking Munster opted to go wide but Marcus di Rollo intercepted O Gara s pass and a possible try-scoring opportunity for Munster ended in them conceding a try.
Paterson tapped over the conversion (14-8) then landed a fairly straightforward penalty to leave just one point separating the sides with, as it turned over five minutes of play left. By this stage Munster were down to 14, Federico Pucciariello in the bin after been yellow carded for a trip on Francisco Leonelli .
But Munster held their nerve admirably for a win over an Edinburgh side who contributed handsomely to an entertaining game played in front of a crowd of almost 4,000.