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Munster

FULL-TIME
20     16

Edinburgh

Pro14 | Thomond Park
14:15 (GMT) | 05-05-2018
Mc munster ed
Munster
Mc edinburgh ed
Edinburgh
START LINE UP
  • 15 Andrew Conway
  • 14 Keith Earls
  • 13 Sam Arnold
  • 12 Rory Scannell
  • 11 Alex Wootton
  • 10 Ian Keatley
  • 9 Conor Murray
  • 8 Christiaan Stander
  • 7 Jack O'Donoghue
  • 6 Peter O'Mahony
  • 5 Billy Holland
  • 4 Jean Kleyn
  • 3 Stephen Archer
  • 2 Niall Scannell
  • 1 David Kilcoyne
RESERVES
  • 23 Simon Zebo
  • 22 JJ Hanrahan
  • 21 James Hart
  • 20 Robin Copeland
  • 19 Gerbrandt Grobler
  • 18 John Ryan
  • 17 James Cronin
  • 16 Rhys Marshall
START LINE UP
  • 15 Blair Kinghorn
  • 14 Dougie Fife
  • 13 Mark Bennett
  • 12 Phil Burleigh
  • 11 Duhan Van der Merwe
  • 10 Jaco van der Walt
  • 9 Nathan Fowles
  • 8 Cornell du Preez
  • 7 Hamish Watson
  • 6 Magnus Bradbury
  • 5 Grant Gilchrist
  • 4 Ben Toolis
  • 3 Murray McCallum
  • 2 Stuart McInally
  • 1 Jordan Lay
RESERVES
  • 23 Damien Hoyland
  • 22 Chris Dean
  • 21 Sean Kennedy
  • 20 Viliami Mata
  • 19 Fraser McKenzie
  • 18 Matt Shields
  • 17 Elliot Millar-Mills
  • 16 Cameron Fenton
Mc article preview   pro14 trophy   munster v edinburgh 2018 800

PREVIEW: Munster v Edinburgh

Fri, 04 May 2018 07:14

PRO14 SEMIFINAL QUALIFIER: Thomond Park will be a formidable battleground for Richard Cockerill's Edinburgh team who come into this qualifier game against Munster after a superb season. 

Edinburgh's 15 wins were matched only by Glasgow Warriors, a tally that also set a new club record for the team from Scotland's capital.

Munster will be eager to progress for a meeting with Leinster in the semifinals. 

Johann van Graan's team lost in last year's Final to Scarlets and after another season of consistency, the men in red will be aiming to go one step further this time around.

However, Van Graan knows Edinburgh have become a force on the field under Cockerill's watch. 

"They’ve got a quality coach, I think he's one of the best coaches in the world," Van Graan said in an interview on scotsman.com.

"They’ve got a lot of belief and they’ve got a very simple plan, so I think they’ll come here with nothing to lose. 

"They've come from my perception, I won't say from nowhere, but nobody has seen them coming and a lot of guys still don't see them but they are a red-hot team, playing some fantastic rugby."

Edinburgh beat Munster in March at Murrayfield, but the Irish side will welcome back a number of Irish stars for this weekend's Qualifier.

However, with eight wins on the road this season, Edinburgh do not fear going to Limerick.

"It's our first ever Final Series appearance; It's a big team away from home and they are a big force in European Rugby," Cockerill told edinburghrugby.org.

"It's going to be a big day for us and we have earnt the right to be there and the league table doesn't lie. We have been working really hard; we are going to go there with confidence and give it our best shot.

"The real exciting part is, both teams need to win. There will be no resting players; it will most likely be a sell-out crowd at Thomond Park. It will probably be the first time we have faced a full-strength Munster side for quite a few years.

"We know if we play at our best, we will give ourselves opportunities to beat Munster. The chances are that they should win. They are at home and just dropped out of Europe, so there is a little bit of pressure on them."

The winner of this fixture will travel to the RDS Arena, Dublin, to play Leinster on Saturday, May 19.

Overall Pro14 head to head record:
Played 31, Munster won 24, Edinburgh won 7.

Prediction: Munster have now reached the end of season play-offs in seven of the last nine years but only won the title once in that period (2011). Munster are unbeaten in their last four Pro14 games since their 6-12 reversal to Edinburgh at Murrayfield on March 16. Munster's only defeat at home in any tournament since February 2017 was to Leinster at Thomond Park on St Stephens Day. This is Edinburgh's first appearance in the play-offs since they were reintroduced in 2010. The Scotsmen's only loss in the last nine rounds of the Pro14 was 20-32 at home to Ulster in Round 19, whilst their only defeat in the Championship outside Scotland since September was at the Cheetahs in November. Edinburgh beat Munster 12-6 at Murrayfield in their only encounter this season to end a five-game winning run in the series by the Irishmen. Edinburgh have been victorious at Thomond Park just once since 2006: 14-13 in September 2014. Edinburgh have won on both of their visits to Irish provinces in 2018. Munster will win this one by 10 points.

Teams:

Munster: 15 Simon Zebo, 14 Andrew Conway, 13 Sammy Arnold, 12 Rory Scannell, 11 Keith Earls, 10 JJ Hanrahan, 9 Conor Murray, 8 Christiaan Stander, 7 Jack O'Donoghue, 6 Peter O'Mahony (captain), 5 Billy Holland, 4 Jean Kleyn, 3 Stephen Archer, 2 Rhys Marshall, 1 James Cronin.
Replacement: 16 Mike Sherry, 17 Dave Kilcoyne, 18 Ciaran Parker, 19 Gerbrandt Grobler, 20 Robin Copeland, 21 James Hart, 22 Ian Keatley, 23 Darren Sweetnam.

Edinburgh: 15 Blair Kinghorn, 14 Dougie Fife, 13 Mark Bennett, 12 Chris Dean, 11 Duhan van der Merwe, 10 Jaco van der Walt, 9 Sam Hidalgo-Clyne, 8 Bill Mata, 7 Jamie Ritchie, 6 Magnus Bradbury,  5 Grant Gilchrist, 4 Ben Toolis, 3 Simon Berghan, 2 Stuart McInally (captain), 1 Jordan Lay.
Replacements: 16 Neil Cochrane, 17 Allan Dell, 18 Willem Nel, 19 Lewis Carmichael, 20 Cornell du Preez, 21 Nathan Fowles, 22 Duncan Weir. 23 James Johnstone.

Date: Saturday, May 5
Venue: Thomond Park, Limerick
Kick-off: 15.15 (14.15 GMT)
Expected weather: It will be partly cloudy with a high of 18°C. There will also be a slight breeze.  
Referee: Nigel Owens 
Assistant Referees: Ben Whitehouse, Ian Davies 
TMO: Jon Mason

Source: scotsman.com, edinburghrugby.org & @PRO14Official

Mc article munster celebrate 800

Departing Zebo sends Munster into semifinals

Sat, 05 May 2018 13:45

PRO14 REPORT: Simon Zebo marked his final appearance at Thomond Park in style, creating the crucial try as Munster set up a mouth-watering semifinal showdown with Leinster by edging past Edinburgh 20-16.

The first-ever Pro14 semifinal qualifier went down to the wire but the Irish side held off their Scottish visitors to book a visit to the RDS Arena in a fortnight's time.

Rhys Marshall pinched an overthrown line-out and crashed over early on to put Munster ahead and although a pair of Sam Hidalgo-Clyne penalties kept Edinburgh in touch, Zebo's audacious chip and mammoth pass put Ireland team-mate Keith Earls over in the corner.

From 17-6 down, replacement scrum-half Nathan Fowles' sniping try got the Scots back in contention but a penalty gave Munster some breathing space and they repelled late pressure to keep their quest for a first title since the 2010/11 season on track.

After a cagey opening, it was Munster who struck first in the Limerick sunshine on eight minutes.

JJ Hanrahan powered a kick to touch deep in the Edinburgh 22 and Scotland hooker Stuart McInally overthrew the line-out, allowing opposite number Marshall to catch the ball, barrel through a couple of tackles and reach out to dot down.

The Irish province is the worst in the Guinness PRO14 from the kicking tee – sporting just a 68 percent success rate – but Hanrahan nailed the conversion from out wide to extend the advantage to 7-0.

Falling behind seemed to spark Edinburgh into life as DTH van der Merwe and Mark Bennett sliced through the home defence and got their side within five metres of the line, before a knock-on under the posts saw the opportunity squandered.

A pair of Hidalgo-Clyne penalties – the second after James Cronin was pinged for putting his hands in the ruck – narrowed the gap to 7-6, while Hanrahan failed to take advantage of the Munster pack earning a 27th-minute scrum penalty as his kick drifted wide.

With exciting full-back Blair Kinghorn dancing past Munster defenders at will, Edinburgh were dominating and looked a threat to score every time they attacked but the hosts held on to reach half-time with a one-point lead.

And early in the second period, they extended that advantage in style. Zebo – on his final appearance at Thomond Park before departing for Racing 92 in the summer – seized upon a loose ball, dinked ahead and collected his own chip before producing a raking pass to Earls on the left touchline, where the speedster turned on the jets to dot down in the corner; Hanrahan again slotting the tricky conversion.

Munster was beginning to dominate at the breakdown and when Jaco van der Walt was caught on the wrong side, Hanrahan increased the lead to 17-6 from the tee.

A Hidalgo-Clyne three-pointer, his final action before being replaced by Fowles, shortly after kept Edinburgh in touch and Fowles showed his nose for the try-line with 20 minutes remaining to get the visitors right back into the contest.

Firstly Viliame Mata, then Kinghorn made big gains before the scrumhalf sniped off the base of the ruck and held off the chasing defender to slide over.

It was a different kicker but the same result as van der Walt bisected the uprights to close the gap to a single point and set up an enthralling final quarter.

A 72nd-minute Hanrahan penalty gave the hosts slightly more of a cushion at 20-16 and they held off late pressure to seal a Semi-Final with old rivals Leinster.

The scorers:

For Munster:
Tries:
Marshall, Earls
Cons: Hanrahan 2
Pens: Hanrahan 2

For Edinburgh:
Try:
Fowles
Con: Van der Walt
Pens: Hidalgo-Clyne  3

Teams:

Munster: 15 Simon Zebo, 14 Andrew Conway, 13 Sammy Arnold, 12 Rory Scannell, 11 Keith Earls, 10 Hanrahan, 9 Conor Murray,8 Christiaan Stander, 7 Jack O'Donoghue, 6 Peter O'Mahony (captain), 5 Billy Holland, 4 Jean Kleyn, 3 Stephen Archer, 2 Rhys Marshall, 1 James Cronin.
Replacement: 16 Mike Sherry, 17 Dave Kilcoyne, 18 Ciaran Parker, 19 Gerbrandt Grobler, 20 Robin Copeland, 21 James Hart, 22 Ian Keatley, 23 Darren Sweetnam.

Edinburgh: 15 Blair Kinghorn, 14 Dougie Fife, 13 Mark Bennett, 12 Chris Dean, 11 Duhan van der Merwe, 10 Jaco van der Walt, 9 Sam Hidalgo-Clyne, 8 Bill Mata, 7 Jamie Ritchie, 6 Magnus Bradbury,  5 Grant Gilchrist, 4 Ben Toolis, 3 Simon Berghan, 2 Stuart McInally (captain), 1 Jordan Lay.
Replacements: 16 Neil Cochrane, 17 Allan Dell, 18 Willem Nel, 19 Lewis Carmichael, 20 Cornell du Preez, 21 Nathan Fowles, 22 Duncan Weir. 23 James Johnstone.

Referee: Nigel Owens 
Assistant Referees: Ben Whitehouse, Ian Davies 
TMO: Jon Mason