Munster pick up a losing bonus point at Cardiff Arms Park

Jack O’Sullivan crossed over for the Reds try in their first URC game of the season
Munster pick up a losing bonus point at Cardiff Arms Park

Paddy Patterson of Munster in action against Gareth Anscombe of Cardiff. Picture: Gruffydd Thomas/Sportsfile

Cardiff Rugby 20 Munster 13 
MUNSTER had to be satisfied with a losing bonus point from their URC opener at Cardiff Arms Park on Saturday afternoon, as Cardiff stole victory with a late penalty and try.

Cardiff’s Max Llewellyn opened the scoring after just three minutes when Fineen Wycherley had initially tackled him to the floor, but when the centre discovered that he hadn’t been held he sprung back to his feet and powered over for the early score.

Munster got up and running with a well-struck Ben Healy penalty in the 17th minute from 35m to reduce the deficit to two.

And right on the half-hour mark, Healy slotted another penalty from straight in front of the posts after Munster had enjoyed a lengthy spell of possession and territory where they had patiently gone through the phases, with Liam Coombes being inches short of the try-line near the left touchline just prior to Healy’s successful kick.

Cardiff were looking to strike just before half time but a brilliant lineout steal from captain Jack O’Donoghue foiled them, but this turned out to be just a short reprieve as from the resultant clearance lineout that man Llewellyn burst through the Munster line again and fed his hooker Kristian Dacey to score, to give them a 12-6 half time lead.

From an attacking lineout on the hour mark Jack O’Sullivan made a huge carry to get to within five metres of the line, and after multiple phases fittingly it was the number eight who crashed over in the 63rd minute, and Jack Crowley duly converted to give Munster the lead.

However, Cardiff went straight down the pitch and put the Munster line under immense pressure, but only emerged with the three points out-half Jarrod Evans garnered from a 69th-minute penalty, as they retook the lead.

Munster couldn’t wrestle back control and Cardiff made sure when winger Aled Summerhill ran in a try off of an attacking scrum down the right wing in the 78th minute to wrap up the game.

Scorers for Cardiff: Evans (1 pen, 1 con), Llewellyn, Dacey, Summerhill (1 try each). 

Munster: Healy (2 pens), Crowley (1 con), O’Sullivan (try).

CARDIFF: L Williams; Summerhill, Lee-Lo, Llewellyn, Adams; Evans, T Williams; Carré, Dacey, Lewis; Turnbull (c), Davies; Botham, Young, Faletau.

Subs: Priestland for L Williams (19), Belcher for Dacey (57), Barratt, Arhip, Timani and Halaholo for Carré, Lewis, Young and Llewellyn (70), Screech for Davies (73).

MUNSTER: Daly; Nash, Farrell, Fekitoa, Coombes; Healy, Patterson; J Wycherley, N Scannell, Knox; Kleyn, F Wycherley; O’Donoghue (Capt.), Kendellen, O’Sullivan.

Subs: Hodnett for Kendellen (22), Kendellen for Hodnett (30), Hodnett for Kendellen (40), Salanoa for Knox (52), Kilcoyne, Barron and Crowley for J Wycherley, N Scannell and Healy (54), Frisch for Farrell (59), Ahern for F Wycherley (70).

Referee: Mike Adamson (SRU)

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