Munster A salvaged a try bonus point from today’s round 5 British and Irish Cup encounter after Yorkshire Carnegie maintained top spot of pool 3 with a 43-29 victory at Headingley.
Carnegie Captain Andy Saull proved to be the difference today with the openside flanker claiming four of his side’s seven tries.
Duncan Williams, Lee Nicholas, Dave Johnston and Cian Bohane all crossed for Munster A while Johnny Holland added nine points from the tee.
Munster were awarded an early penalty after Carnegie went offside but were unable to register points after out-half Johnny Holland’s 40m attempt just dropped short.
As Head Coach Mick O’Driscoll highlighted earlier in the week the hosts dominant lineout maul was evident today and proved to be a successful scoring platform with Saull scoring two tries off the back of the superior set-piece.
A six minute try from the Yorkshire captain went unconverted after Joel Hodgson’s kick struck the upright.
Munster replied through a Johnny Holland penalty and the young side moved ahead thanks to a converted Duncan Williams try in the opening fifteen.
However, the hosts went on to enjoy a period of superior possession and dominance which produced five unanswered tries.
A try each from hooker Joe Graham and centre Andy Forsyth, two from Andy Saull, who secured his hat-trick in the 37th minute, and three Hodgson conversions moved the English Championship side out of sight to 31-10 at the interval.
And there was no let-up on the return as they continued to wreak havoc on the Munster defence with a fourth Saull try seven minutes into the second half.
O’Driscoll’s young charges did rally together and somehow turned the tide with a steely second half effort and improved performance that saw the men in red reply with three successive tries scored by Lee Nicholas, David Johnston and Cian Bohane.
With the margin reduced to nine points Bryan Redpath's men did have the final say in the game after replacement Josh Bainbridge dived over in the corner. Hodgson was unable to convert but the home side had done enough after their impressive first half performance.
Munster A: David Johnston (Ned Hodson 74), Stephen Fitzgerald, Dan Goggin (Darren Sweetnam 52), Cian Bohane, Gerhard van den Heever; Johnny Holland, Duncan Williams (Ryan Foley 78); Brendan Quinlan, Eddie Rossiter (Shane Fenton 78), Peter McCabe (Brian Scott 59); Lee Nicholas (Ben Kilkenny 74), Sean McCarthy, Jordan Coghlan, Sean Doyle (YC/Brian Scott 49; Conor Oliver 59), Shane Buckley Capt.
Replacements: Shane Fenton, Brian Scott, Ben Kilkenny, Conor Oliver, Ryan Foley, Ned Hodson, Darren Sweetnam.