Erasmus' Munster off to winning start in Pro12

Colm Kinsella, Rugby Correspondent

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Colm Kinsella, Rugby Correspondent

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ckinsella@limerickleader.ie

Erasmus' Munster off to winning start in Pro12

RASSIE Erasmus’ reign as Munster’s first Director of Rugby got off to the perfect start as the province scored an exciting 23-13 Guinness Pro12 victory over the Scarlets at Parc y Scarlets on Saturday.

First half tries from James Cronin and Ronan O’Mahony proved crucial as Munster scored their first away win over the Scarlets since 2011.

Those first half tries from Cronin and O’Mahony, along with two conversions and a penalty from New Zealand out-half Tyler Bleyendaal, helped the visitors into a 17-10 half-time lead

Bleyendaal added another penalty after the break and replacement Ian Keatley then put 10 between the sides off the tee to seal Munster's winning start.

Munster’s hugely influential back-rower Tommy O’Donnell deservedly received the Man of the Match accolade.

Munster face Cardiff Blues at Musgrave Park in their first home Pro12 fixture of the season on Friday night, 7.35pm.

SCORERS: Scarlets: Gareth Davies try, Rhys Patchell two pens, con. Munster: James Cronin, Ronan O’Mahony try each, Tyler Bleyendaal two pens, two cons, Ian Keatley pen.

SCARLETS: Liam Williams; DTH van der Merwe, Scott Williams, Hadleigh Parkes, Steff Evans; Rhys Patchell, Gareth Davies; Dylan Evans, Ken Owens (capt), Werner Kruger, Jake Ball, Lewis Rawlins, Aaron Shingler, John Barclay, Josh Macleod. Replacements: Ryan Elias, Wyn Jones, Peter Edwards, David Bulbring, Tadhg Beirne, Jonathan Evans, Dan Jones, Jonathan Davies.

MUNSTER: Simon Zebo; Darren Sweetnam, Dan Goggin, Rory Scannell, Ronan O'Mahony; Tyler Bleyendaal, Duncan Williams; James Cronin, Niall Scannell, John Ryan, Dave Foley, Billy Holland (capt), Dave O'Callaghan, Tommy O'Donnell, Jack O'Donoghue. Replacements: Kevin O'Byrne, Dave Kilcoyne, Brian Scott, Jean Kleyn, Donnacha Ryan, Tomas O'Leary, Ian Keatley, Cian Bohane.

REFEREE: Lloyd Linton (Scotland)