Munster A hang on to secure Celtic Cup bonus win in Cardiff

Colm Kinsella, Rugby Correspondent

Reporter:

Colm Kinsella, Rugby Correspondent

Email:

ckinsella@limerickleader.ie

Munster A hang on to secure Celtic Cup bonus win in Cardiff

Munster A head coach Peter Malone

MUNSTER A withstood a strong final quarter comeback from Cardiff Blues A to make it four wins from four in the Celtic Cup with a nail-biting 33-32 victory in Wales on Saturday afternoon.

Munster A had looked all set to seal a comfortable victory when racing into a 20-point lead, 33-13, with a little over 10 minutes remaining.

However, three late tries from the home side set up a nervous finish before Peter Malone’s side finally closed out a precious victory.

Munster A lead the game 16-13 at half-time at the Arms Park.

The visitors had three penalty goals from captain Bill Johnston, while Peter Malone’s side was also awarded a penalty try shortly before the break when Cardiff were penalised for pulling down a well-executed maul.

A 43rd minute Sean French try, with Cardiff down to 14 players following a sin-binning, had Munster A 21-13 to the good soon after the restart.

A third Munster A try followed soon after, before centre Alex McHenry secured the bonus point try for the visitors.

However, a run of 19 unanswered points in the final 14 minutes, including three tries and two conversions, hauled Cardiff back into contention and had Munster nerve ends jangling,

MUNSTER A: Stephen Fitzgerald; Liam Coombes, Sean French, Alex McHenry, Calvin Nash; Bill Johnston (Capt), Jack Stafford; Josh Wycherley, Diarmuid Barron, Jeremy Loughman; Darren O’Shea, Sean O’Connor; Dave O’Callaghan, Jack Daly, Gavin Coombes. Replacements: Eoghan Clarke, Cronan Gleeson, Keynan Knox, Paddy Kelly, John Hodnett, John Poland, Ben Healy, Conor Philips.