Munster too strong for Warriors
September 24, 2010
Glasgow's Jon Welsh is halted by the Munster defence
© PA Photos
Glasgow Warriors put up a brave fight before being overwhelmed by Magners League leaders Munster at Firhill on Friday night.
The home side made undefeated Munster work for their bonus-point 43-29 win, but once the Irish outfit nosed ahead with a two-try blitz early in the second period there was an inevitability about the result.
Munster had taken a first-half lead thanks to tries from Denis Leamy and Johne Murphy but it was the second-half scores from Niall Ronan and Murphy again that broke the home resistance. Ronan O'Gara's boot was responsible for 23 points.
Glasgow had forged ahead thanks to contrasting but well-worked tries from winger DTH van der Merwe and scrum-half Colin Gregor plus five penalties and two conversions from teenager Duncan Weir, on debut at fly-half.
Weir had three penalty chances in the first seven minutes to get his Glasgow career off to a good start but could only hit the target with his third effort. An open but scrappy game developed with plenty of further penalties. O'Gara and Weir each missed before Glasgow conjured up the first try of the night after 18 minutes. With play taken to the visitors' line on the left, Weir hoisted a cross-kick that was knocked down by Bernardo Stortoni to Van der Merwe, who scored. Weir converted from the touchline.
Four minutes later Leinster registered their first try. Driving from a line-out, prop Tony Buckley got very close and allowed Leamy to finish off. O'Gara kicked the simple conversion. With O'Gara and Weir exchanging a penalty each, the score stood at 16-10 when the Munster.pack at last got into gear. Working their way into the home 22, the ball was released left and winger Murphy skidded over through a half tackle. O'Gara converted to put Munster a point ahead.
The lead was short-lived and Glasgow went in leading 26-17. A clever Weir kick produced a penalty that he successfully booted.One penalty too many saw Donncha O'Callaghan sin-binned, allowing the Glasgow pack to put on pressure with Gregor darting over and Weir converting.
Munster found another gear after half-time and within 10 minutes not only were they back ahead but they had the try bonus-point. Firstly, Leamy picked up from a scrum and sent in flanker Ronan for a textbook score. O'Gara converted and set up the next try for Murphy with a perfect kick, adding the extras to put Munster 31-26 up. That was a winning position they were to comfortably maintain with O'Gara nudging over four more penalties against one from Weir.
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