MUNSTER will look to make it two wins in seven days against Italian opposition when Zebre visit Thomond Park for their Guinness PRO12 clash this Friday night, 7.30pm.
Munster recovered from their frustrating one-point defeat to Edinburgh in their opening PRO12 tie of the season with a hard-fought 21-10 win over Treviso at the Stadio Monigo on Friday night.
CJ Stander and Simon Zebo scored Munster’s tries while Ian Keatley kicked 11 points to give the province a welcome result and the league points required from the round 2 encounter.
Keatley’s right boot was called into action in the opening minute and it was a positive start for the out-half who, in all, was successful with four of his five kicks at goal.
But it was the hosts who were first to cross the try-line with a well-taken score after 17 minutes. The lineout option went long and with the ball passed back inside to winger Ludovico Nitoglia, he punched a hole in the Munster defence to set up full-back Simone Rugusi who finished the move. English number 10 Joe Carlisle added the extras and the hosts were 7-3 ahead.
A Keatley penalty six minutes later reduced the margin before in-form back rower Stander put Munster ahead as he crashed over for the visitors’ first try.
Munster began to build the phases and with the pack powering over the line it was Stander who claimed the close range try - his third in this season’s PRO12. The conversion was added by Keatley and Munster led 13-7 at the break.
Crucially in the 50th minute winger Zebo scored from a counter attack. He found space out wide and darted in for his first score of the campaign, Keatley missing his only kick of the night with the touchline conversion.
The Italian job was completed with a final Keatley penalty on the 70-minute mark and Anthony Foley’s men held on to record their first victory in three years at the Stadio di Monigo.
MUNSTER - Felix Jones (Captain), Andrew Conway, Andrew Smith, Ivan Dineen, Simon Zebo; Ian Keatley, Duncan Williams (Cathal Sheridan 64); James Cronin (John Ryan 71), Duncan Casey (Kevin O’Byrne 77), Stephen Archer (BJ Botha 55); Dave Foley (Donncha O’Callaghan 72), Billy Holland; CJ Stander, Tommy O’Donnell (Sean Dougall 74), Robin Copeland. Replacements: Kevin O’Byrne, John Ryan, BJ Botha, Donncha O’Callaghan, Sean Dougall, Cathal Sheridan, Johnny Holland, Ronan O’Mahony.