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Munster Side Named For Racing

January 6, 2017 12:00 am By Munster Rugby

Munster Side Named For Racing

No less than ten changes are made to the side that defeated Connacht last weekend as Munster resume Champions Cup action in the rescheduled round 1 encounter away to Racing 92 at the Stade Yves-du-Manoir tomorrow – ko 3.45pm (Irish time).

Director of Rugby Rassie Erasmus also names his first changed European side this season.

Five personnel changes are seen in the pack. Niall Scannell and John Ryan both return to join James Cronin in the front row while Donnacha Ryan comes into the second row in partnering Billy Holland who makes the positional switch from number 6.

Tommy O’Donnell has overcome an ankle injury sustained at the Sportsground last weekend to continue at openside with the returning duo of captain Peter O’Mahony and CJ Stander taking charge at 6 and 8 respectively.

Conor Murray and Tyler Bleyendaal resume their half back partnership, as do Rory Scannell and Jaco Taute in midfield.

Simon Zebo’s return at fullback sees Andrew Conway move to the right wing with Ronan O’Mahony named on the opposite flank.

Included among the replacements, should he feature tomorrow, Keith Earls will make his 50th European appearance.

Along with those ruled out through injury, Jean Kleyn and Thomas Du Toit were unavailable for selection this week due to illness.

Munster also need just one try to reach 400 in Europe’s top flight and would become the third club to reach this milestone with Toulouse and Leicester Tigers.

Munster XV: Simon Zebo; Andrew Conway, Jaco Taute, Rory Scannell, Ronan O’Mahony; Tyler Bleyendaal, Conor Murray; James Cronin, Niall Scannell, John Ryan; Donnacha Ryan, Billy Holland; Peter O’Mahony – capt., Tommy O’Donnell, CJ Stander.

Replacements: Rhys Marshall, Dave Kilcoyne, Stephen Archer, Dave Foley, Jack O’Donoghue, Duncan Williams, Keith Earls, Francis Saili.

Racing 92 v Munster, European Champions Cup, Saturday January 7th at the Stade Yves-du-Manoir – ko 3.45pm (Irish time).

This game will be televised on Sky Sports

Live coverage on Twitter by following @munsterrugby #R92vMUN

Next Home Game
Over 20,000 tickets have now been sold for the return encounter with Racing on Saturday January 21st at 5.30pm.

Tickets can be purchased online here, from the Munster Rugby Ticket Offices at Thomond Park and Irish Independent Park or by calling 061 421103.

Ticket offers
Adult and Junior: Purchase any adult ticket and purchase an accompanying ticket (for Junior) at half price.

Student: Tickets start from €;10 with valid Student ID required at the gate on matchday.

Match Packs: Simply select a minimum of three games and save 10% across the cost of all games. Match Packs can be bought online here.

Munster - Match Page - Lineups - Preview

Munster Deliver Winning Performance

January 7, 2017 12:00 am By Munster Rugby

Munster Deliver Winning Performance

Simon Zebo’s 50th provincial try sent Munster on their way to a barnstorming 32-7 Champions Cup bonus point win over a rather rudderless Racing 92 side at Stade Yves-du-Manoir.

Rassie Erasmus' men moved back to the top of Pool 1, three points clear of Glasgow Warriors, whom they visit next Saturday, before the return leg against Racing in Limerick seven days later.

Simon Zebo, man-of-the-match CJ Stander and Andrew Conway all touched down to establish a 25-0 interval lead in cold and wet conditions, as the dominant Munster pack continually pummeled holes in the Racing defence.

Hooker Niall Scannell – part of an excellent Munster set-piece game – crashed over via a 56th-minute maul to seal the bonus point with Tyler Bleyendaal topping up his tally to 12 points. The reigning French champions, already out of the running with no pool points and lying eighth in the Top 14 table, had a breakaway seven-pointer from flanker Matthieu Voisin as their only consolation.

Following some emotional pre-match tributes to Foley, the visitors signalled their intent early on, Tommy O'Donnell breaking past Joe Rokocoko and passing inside to Bleyendaal before the covering Camille Chat rescued the situation for Racing who had 11 personnel changes from last Sunday's 17-11 league defeat to Toulon.

The eager Munster forwards heaped pressure on the hosts' lineout and maul, twice going close from pick-and-goes either side of Bleyendaal's 14th-minute penalty from in front of the posts.

The province's patience was rewarded in the 23rd minute when aggressive clearing out from Peter O'Mahony and Donnacha Ryan, who had one of his best performances in Munster red, produced quick ball and Zebo, fed wide on the left, managed to turn after a tackle from Teddy Thomas and make the line for his half-century score and Munster's 400th European Cup try.

Bleyendaal was off target with the conversion but Munster continued to dictate play in the second quarter, Conor Murray being held up just short after a Ryan-led turnover from a maul and a bulldozing Stander carry.

The Kiwi out-half mopped up with three more points for an 11-0 scoreline and a couple of minutes later, Stander took centre stage, blocking Benjamin Dambielle's attempted kick and then popping up on the left for a superb 30-metre surge to the whitewash, which included a big hand-off on Racing captain Chris Masoe.

Bleyendaal converted and also added the extras to Conway's effort on the stroke of half-time, the winger gobbling up Murray's deftly-weighted grubber towards the right corner flag.

Munster quelled Racing's initial response early in the second period, diligently using their forwards to get into scoring range and following two collapsed mauls, a third proved successful with workhorse Scannell powering over for Bleyendaal to convert.

Racing responded with a try seven minutes later, a ricocheted kick allowing full-back Juan Imhoff to hack through and the supporting Voisin won the race to touch down, with replacement Dan Carter converting.

However, Munster's very well-marshalled defence prevented any further concessions and their impactful bench made their mark, particularly Keith Earls and Dave Kilcoyne, as they sewed up a comprehensive 25-point victory.

Munster: S Zebo; A Conway, J Taute (F Sailli 56), R Scannell, R O'Mahony (K Earls 56) T Bleyendaal, C Murray (D Williams 67); J Cronin (D Kilcoyne 56), N Scannell (R Marshall 63), J Ryan (S Archer 66), D Ryan (D Foley 74), B Holland, P O'Mahony, T O'Donnell (J O'Donoghue 48), CJ Stander.

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