Munster 68 Southern Kings 3
ARNO BOTHA scored a hat-trick of tries and Bishopstown’s Shane Daly scored two as Munster ran in 10 tries against Southern King ragged at Musgrave Park last night.
Johann van Graan’s side temporarily move back to the top of the conference after their convincing win.
Southern Kings were a poor second in this game as Munster played fluid, expansive rugby that kept the crowd enthralled right to the end.
John Hodnett, making his first start for the province, won Man of the Match and capped a great performance with a great try in the second half.
Munster opened the scoring after eight minutes with a try from number eight Arno Botha as he surged off the back of a penalty scrum to score under the posts following the sin-binning of Southern Kings full-back Andell Loubser. JJ Hanrahan converted for a seven-point lead.
Kings replied with a Dmitri penalty on the quarter-hour mark but Munster were back for a second try after 23 minutes. A switch move from Dan Goggin under the posts was fed to Mike Haley who in turn fed Calvin Nash for a try. Hanrahan added a difficult conversion to make it 14-3.
Botha was in for a second after 29 minutes after poor defence from Kings saw the number eight score under the posts with Hanrahan again converting.
Kings did apply pressure in the 10 minutes before the interval but weren’t able to convert it to scores.
The home team had the last say of the half with a Jack O’Donoghue try from a clever chip through by Hanrahan. Hanrahan converted for a fourth time to leave the score at 28-3 at the interval.
Johann van Graan’s side made it five tries after 50 minutes with John Hodnett, making his first start for Munster scoring under the posts after he was at the end of a counter-attack started by full-back Mike Haley.
Scrum-half Neil Cronin scored minutes later after a blindside break by Dan Goggin with Hanrahan converting that and Hodnett’s earlier score to leave it 42-3 Shane Daly then made the most of a poor pass in the Kings dead ball area and pounced to score Munster’s seventh try with substitute Ben Healy converting.
Dan Goggin made it on to the scoreboard next and Botha wrapped up the scoring with his hat-trick.
Scorers for Munster: Tries: A Botha (3), S Daly (2), C Nash, J O’Donoghue, J Hodnett, N Cronin, D Goggin. cons: JJ Hanrahan (6), B Healy (3).
Southern Kings: pen: D Catrakilis.
MUNSTER: M Haley, C Nash, C Farrell, D Goggin, S Daly, JJ Hanrahan, N Cronin, J Cronin, N Scannell, J Ryan, F Wycherley, B Holland (c), J O’Donoghue, J Hodnett, A Botha.
Subs: N McCarthy for Cronin, B Healy for Hanrahan, R Scannell for Nash (56), J Loughman for J Cronin, K Knox for Ryan, K O’Byrne for Scannell (59), G Coombes for Wycherley, C Cloete for Hodnett (62).
SOUTHERN KINGS: A Loubser, C Hollis, S Sithole, E Cronje, E Lidick, D Catrakilis, S Ungerer, S Ferreira, J du Toit, R de Klerk, H Sexton, JC Astle (c), L Badiyana, B de Wee, R Lerm.
Subs: A van Rooyen, X Vos, I Prinsloo, A Fortuin, T Bholi, L Dapula, J Allderman, C Winnaar.
Referee: N Amashukeli (Georgia).