Classy Munster book home quarter-final

Sun, 21 Jan 2018 18:59
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CHAMPIONS CUP REPORT: Munster scored six tries as they defeated Castres Olympique 48-3 to top European Rugby Champions Cup Pool 4 and clinch a home quarter-final at Thomond Park.

Castres took the lead through Rory Kockott and dominated the first 15 minutes, before a pair of Ian Keatley penalties put the home side in front.

Man of the Match Keith Earls then scored Munster's first try of the afternoon on 32 minutes, to give the Irish province a 10-point lead at the interval.

Rhys Marshall added a second try four minutes after half-time, before Munster took over with a further penalty try just before the hour mark.

Simon Zebo ensured a bonus point victory with a superb try, darting past two Castres defenders before diving over the whitewash.

Alex Wootton and James Cronin added a fifth and sixth try in the closing stages to put further gloss on a comprehensive victory for Munster.

The Irish province will host RC Toulon in the Champions Cup quarter-finals at Thomond Park.

The scorers:

For Munster:
Tries: Earls, Marshall, Penalty try, Zebo, Wootton, Cronin
Cons: Keatley 3, Hanrahan 2
Pens: Keatley 2

For Castres:
Pen: Kockott

Yellow Cards: Thomas Combezou (Castres), Daniel Kotze (Castres)

Munster: 15 Simon Zebo, 14 Andrew Conway, 13 Chris Farrell, 12 Rory Scannell, 11 Keith Earls, 10 Ian Keatley, 9 Conor Murray, 8 CJ Stander, 7 Chris Cloete, 6 Peter O’Mahony (captain), 5 Billy Holland, 4 Jean Kleyn, 3 Stephen Archer, 2 Rhys Marshall, 1 Dave Kilcoyne
Replacements: 16 Niall Scannell, 17 James Cronin, 18 John Ryan, 19 Darren O’Shea, 20 Jack O’Donoghue, 21 Duncan Williams, 22 JJ Hanrahan, 23 Alex Wootton

Castres: 15 Geoffrey Palis, 14 Kylian Jaminet, 13 Thomas Combezou, 12 Robert Ebersohn, 11 David Smith, 10 Julien Dumora, 9 Rory Kockott, 8 Alex Tulou, 7 Steve Mafi, 6 Yannick Caballero, 5 Thibault Lassalle, 4 Alexandre Bias, 3 Damien Tussac, 2 Jody Jenneker, 1 Antoine Tichit
Replacements: 16 Kevin Firmin, 17 Tudor Stroe, 18 Daniel Kotze, 19 Victor Moreaux, 20 Baptiste Delaporte, 21 Yohan Domenech, 22 Yohan Le Bourhis, 23 Afusipa Taumoepeau

Referee: Ben Whitehouse (Wales)
Assistant referees: Wayne Davies (Wales), Dewi Phillips (Wales)
TMO: Jonathan Mason (Wales)

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EUROPEAN CUP
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Pool 1
Team P W D L Pts
La Rochelle 6 4 0 2 20
Wasps 6 3 0 3 17
Ulster 6 4 0 2 17
Harlequins 6 1 0 5 7
Pool 2
Team P W D L Pts
Clermont Auvergne 6 5 0 1 22
Saracens 6 3 1 2 18
Ospreys 6 2 1 3 15
Northampton Saints 6 1 0 5 6
Pool 3
Team P W D L Pts
Leinster 6 6 0 0 27
Exeter Chiefs 6 3 0 3 15
Montpellier 6 2 0 4 13
Glasgow Warriors 6 1 0 5 7
Pool 4
Team P W D L Pts
Munster 6 4 1 1 21
Racing Metro 6 4 0 2 19
Castres 6 2 1 3 12
Leicester Tigers 6 1 0 5 7
Pool 5
Team P W D L Pts
Scarlets 6 4 0 2 21
Toulon 6 4 0 2 19
Bath 6 4 0 2 18
Treviso 6 0 0 5 4