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Report | Seven-Try Munster Defeat London Irish

September 13, 2019 10:31 pm By The Editor

Dan Goggin scores the first of Munster

Dan Goggin scores the first of Munster's seven tries. Inpho

Munster secured a seven-try 45-5 victory over London Irish in the season opener at Irish Independent Park on Friday night.

Eight Greencore Munster Rugby Academy players featured with debuts for new signing Nick McCarthy and Academy players Thomas Ahern, Jack O’Sullivan, John Hodnett, Ben Healy and Keynan Knox.

The tries came from Dan Goggin (two), O’Sullivan, Mike Haley, JJ Hanrahan, Diarmuid Barron and Liam Coombes touched down with debutant O’Sullivan and Barron scoring their first tries for the province.

Tyler Bleyendaal (one) and Hanrahan (four) added five conversions between them.

A further positive saw James Cronin make a welcome return from injury for his first appearance since November.

A fantastic crowd of 5,678 attended the clash with Munster away to Connacht next week in their second pre-season fixture as the Guinness PRO14 kicks off at Thomond Park against Dragons on Saturday, September 28 (3pm). Buy tickets here.

Munster led 7-0 at the break after an evenly-fought first half with defences firmly on top. Goggin showed great footwork to score in the left corner and captain Tyler Bleyendaal landed the touchline conversion for a 7-0 lead at the interval.

Munster made 13 changes at the break with only Goggin and Calvin Nash the only players to keep their places.

O’Sullivan made the dream start to his debut as the back-row forward broke clear down the left wing and sold a superb dummy to score. JJ Hanrahan converted but Matty Williams hit back almost immediately for Irish as he picked up a loose ball to score.

Munster ramped up the pressure and streaked clear with Haley scoring after a well-worked 8-9 move off a scrum by O’Sullivan and Craig Casey.

Goggin scored his second try after catching the loose ball after Hanrahan attempted to find Shane Daly with a crossfield kick and Hanrahan scored Munster’s fifth try after Fineen Wycherley was halted just short of the line.

Barron burrowed his way over for his first Munster try and Liam Coombes streaked away to score Munster’s seventh late on to cap a fine first outing.

VIDEO | Jack O’Sullivan Interview

Tries: Dan Goggin (two), Jack O’Sullivan, Mike Haley, JJ Hanrahan, Diarmuid Barron, Liam Coombes.

Cons: Tyler Bleyendaal (one) and JJ Hanrahan (four)

Try: Matt Williams

Munster: Darren Sweetnam; Calvin Nash, Alex McHenry, Dan Goggin, Liam Coombes; Tyler Bleyendaal (C), Neil Cronin; Jeremy Loughman, Kevin O’Byrne, Keynan Knox; Darren O’Shea, Fineen Wycherley; Jack O’Donoghue, John Hodnett, Gavin Coombes.

Replacements (all used): Diarmuid Barron, James Cronin, Peter McCabe, Stephen Archer, Thomas Ahern, Seán O’Connor, Arno Botha, Tommy O’Donnell, Jack O’Sullivan, Craig Casey, Nick McCarthy, JJ Hanrahan, Ben Healy, Shane Daly, Rory Scannell, Mike Haley.

London Irish: Tom Parton; Tom Fowlie, Curtis Rona, Terrence Hepetema, Ollie Hassell- Collins; Stephen Myler, Rory Brand; Harry Elrington, Dave Porecki, Lovejoy Chawatama; Chunya Munga, Franco van der Merwe (C); George Nott, Conor Gilsenan, Matt Rogerson.

Replacements (all used): Will Goodrick-Clarke; Ross McMillan; Patric Cilliers; Barney Maddison; Sam Collingridge; Ben Donnell; Blair Cowan; Izaiha Moore-Aiono; Scott Steele; Jacob Atkins; Ben Loader; Matt Williams; Brendan Macken; Will Partington.