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09th Nov 2019

Andrew Conway moment of pure brilliance seals it for Munster

Patrick McCarry

Andrew Conway


Rory Scannell and Andrew Conway were the two star men for Munster. At least one of them made the plane to Japan.

Munster made hard work of it against a dogged Ulster side but they got the Guinness PRO14 victory that should put them in good stead before the Champions Cup dominates four of the next five weekends.

John Cooney put Ulster 3-0 ahead before a powerful CJ Stander leg drive saw Munster go 7-3 ahead. Stander took the ball some five yards from the tryline and there were four Ulster players in his path but he was backed up by a couple of teammates and heaved himself under the posts.

There was no end of niggle in the first half as both sides got in respective faces when penalties were won, turnovers conceded and whatever yer having yerself. Jack McGrath doled out some smack talk after one Alby Mathewson error and was then on the receiving end after a scrum penalty went Munster’s way.

A Cooney penalty reduced Ulster’s arrears to just a point but Munster finished the half strongly and were rewarded for their efforts with a Rory Scannell try after a smart Tyler Bleyendaal (on for the injured JJ Harahan) pass to Chris Farrell. HALF-TIME: Munster 15-6 Ulster

Ulster looked up against it but the hosts gifted them a way back into the game with some sloppy errors and, off the back of a scrum, Rob Herring backed himself and beat the opposition half backs to the tryline. When Cooney lapped over a 58th minute penalty, Dan McFarland’s side were 16-15 ahead.

Mike Haley shelled a simple pass to scupper a promising attack but Ulster could not keep hold of the ball for long enough to cause troubles for Munster. In the end, the game was settled by the one moment of true brilliance in the game.

Bleyendaal popped an inside pass to Conway, who was taking a smart line, and the winger did the rest, burning Matt Faddes and beating Jacob Stockdale to the tryline:

Bleyendaal converted but missed a penalty to seal the victory, and deny Ulster a losing bonus point. Munster, ultimately, did not regret that as Stuart McCloskey’s intercept and charge was halted by Scannell before Kieran Treadwell knocked on.

Conway was forced to sit out the Ireland’s World Cup quarter final, in Japan, despite looking to be his country’s best winger. His performance, and score, shows up Joe Schmidt’s error in not starting him against Samoa and New Zealand.

OUR MAN OF THE MATCH: Rory Scannell (Munster).



The latest episode sees Barry Murphy, Andrew Trimble and Jerry Flannery look back on the enthralling 2019 World Cup final and the rise of Felix Jones.


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