How the Munster players rated against Glasgow

Colm Kinsella

Reporter:

Colm Kinsella

Simon Zebo is tackled by Alex Dunbar during Munster's RaboDirect PRO12 game against Glasgow on Saturday
Colm Kinsella rates the Munster players after Saturday’s disappointing RaboDirect PRO12 loss to Glasgow.

Colm Kinsella rates the Munster players after Saturday’s disappointing RaboDirect PRO12 loss to Glasgow.

Felix Jones 6

Solid performance from the full-back who was dependable under the high ball and eager to counter-attack when the opportunity arose. Looks to have cemented his starting place for crucial upcoming fixtures in both the Heineken Cup and PRO12.

Gerhard van den Heever 6

Selected on the right wing, the South African flyer came close to adding to his tally of two tries in six matches in the RaboDirect PRO12. Growing in confidence with every outing, having recovered from a couple of injuries.

Keith Earls 6

Deployed at outside centre with Casey Laulala ruled out through injury. Could become a long-term replacement at 13 for Laulala who departs for France this summer. Poses constant threat with ball in hand.

James Downey 6

Big couple of weeks for Downey whose future with Munster beyond the end of the season remains uncertain. Solid in defence assured with ball in hand. Did well to prevent Glasgow from getting a try bonus point in second half when holding the ball up over the line.

Simon Zebo 5

Caught out defensively for Sean Maitland’s first half try when he slipped off a tackle. Ever willing and threatening with ball in hand. Defence under scrutiny, however.

JJ Hanrahan 5

Only on the pitch for 20 minutes having picked up a groin injury which resulted in Hanrahan being replaced by Ian Keatley. Will be hoping to get back playing quickly as Munster potentially have seven massive fixtures to come this season.

Conor Murray 6

Playing behind a pack that was forced to give second best at the breakdown for much of the evening made life awkward for Murray. Box-kicked well and pass was accurate for the most part. Will take on added leadership role with O’Mahony sidelined for remainder of the season.

John Ryan 5

Twenty five year old Ryan was making his fifth start in the PRO121 this season. Will benefit from the experience. Was replaced by Dave Kilcoyne early in the second half.

Duncan Casey 6

Easy to forget that Shannon clubman Casey only made his competitive debut for Munster last December. Has made six starts now and is impressing with every outing. Munster lost just out line-out on their own throw.

BJ Botha 6

The only member of the Munster front row to start again a week after the heroics against Toulouse. The South African is a key man in the Munster scrum, but was forced off in the second half with an ankle injury. Fingers crossed it is not serious.

Donncha O’Callaghan 6

Munster’s record cap holder O’Callaghan was making his 247th appearance for the province on Saturday night. Put in a good shift, but has fallen behind Dave Foley in the pecking order to partner Paul O’Connell in the crunch games this season.

David Foley 6

Benefitting from a consistent run of games in the side in recent months. Foley produced a competent performance. Has now started nine games since the start of 2014 in establishing himself as first choice partner for Paul O’Connell in the second row with Donnacha Ryan out injured.

CJ Stander 6

Another solid display from the South African following on from his Man of the Match performance against Toulouse a week earlier. Will have regrets about opting to kick ahead rather than pass outside to van den Heever in the 33rd minute when Munster had the Glasgow defence stretched.

Sean Dougall 6

Dougall will have been anxious to put pressure on Tommy O’Donnell for the starting place at openside flanker, but his display here was solid rather than spectacular. Dougall will be hoping to get further game time in marquee fixtures as Munster potentially have seven games to go this season.

James Coughlan 6

Stand-in captain for the night with Peter O’Mahony ruled out through injury, Coughlan worked hard in the back-row where Glasgow held the upperhand for much of the night.

REPLACEMENTS

Ian Keatley 6

Replaced JJ Hanrahan, who picked up a groin injury, after just 21 minutes. Keatley turned in a solid performance in the key out-half position. Established as Munster’s first choice option to start at 10.

Dave Kilcoyne 7

Introduced after 48 minutes for John Ryan, Kilcoyne turned in an eye-catching display here. Scrummaged well, winning an early penalty and carried ball with telling effect. Looks to have cemented his position as first choice loosehead prop.

Johne Murphy 6

Having enjoyed a terrific opening half to the season, Murphy has fallen down the pecking order at Munster and has not been a first choice starter in recent marquee games. Looked threatening with ball in hand here having replaced van den Heever on 63 minutes.

Quentin MacDonald, Billy Holland, Paddy Butler, Duncan Williams – not on long enough to be rated.