Strauss helps orchestrate deserved victory over Munster
GLASGOW just edged out Munster in an entertaining seven-try PRO12 match on the plastic at Rugby Park.
Warriors might have scored more, but, as so-often this season, they made too many unforced errors and failed to complete some fine build-up play. Skipper Josh Strauss rightly won the man of the match award, with some splendid yard-gaining charges; the home backs were generally the more-threatening, but, they found Munster’s defence obdurate, while the Welsh referee, although he yellow carded visiting scrum-half Tomas O’Leary and prop James Cronin, did not endear himself to the home crowd, by turning a blind eye to some Munster offences break-down.
Glasgow wasted little time in taking the lead – surging downfield, with Leone Nakarawa, Ali Price and Strauss leading the charge. Munster quelled their first three charges at the line, but, in five minutes, tight-head Sila Puafisi barged over between the posts, Duncan Weir converting for 7-0.
From the restart, Strauss and Taqele Naiyaravoro took play back to the Munster red zone. Strauss was held up on the line but Puafisi was on his captain’s shoulder to charge over for his second try, again converted by Weir.
But, Munster recovered quickly and two minutes later they cut the deficit. Wing Rory Scannell just failed to gather an ankle-height pass right in the corner, but a Munster penalty saw them opt for the short-range line-out. Glasgow held the charge, but the visitors recycled right
at the through five phases, before tight-head Dave Kilcoyne burrowed over, the extras added by by Ian Keatley.
The stand-off further reduced the leeway from a penalty in front of the posts in 20 minutes, Four minutes later, the visitors went in front, and again Kilcoyne was their try scorer. Keatley goaled to put Munster ahead 17-14.
The lead changed hands again four minutes after the restart, as Duncan Weir scored a superb solo try, surging onto Peter Horne’s pass and cutting a great line through the defence from 30 metres out for an unconverted try.
Visiting nine O’Leary was then yellowed and Glasgow stretched their lead through a Weir penalty. However, the Irishmen again hit back and when a close-range maul was held, replacement hooker Mike Sherry broke clear to touch down in the corner.
Keatley converted to put Munster 24-22 ahead, but, as the match entered its final 10 minutes, Glasgow claimed the bonus-point try, when, from a ruck under the posts, they switched play left and Strauss sent Glenn Bryce over for an unconverted try to clinch the fivepoint win for Warriors, with Munster having to settle for a losing bonus.
P Murchie, T Naiyaravoro, G Bryce, P Horne, S Lamont, D Weir, A Price (G Hart 60m); G Reid (J Yanuyanutawa 53m), J Malcolm (C Fenton 76m), S Puafisi (Z Fagerson 53m), T Swinson (G Peterson 65m), L Nakarawa, R Harley, C Fusaro (S Favaro 38), J Strauss. F Lyle, R Hughes.
A Conway, D Sweetnam, D Johnston (C Bohane 73m), R Scannell, R O’Mahoney, I Keatley, T O’Leary ( D Williams 66m); D Kilcoyne (J Cronin 46m), N Scannell (M Sherry 56m), J Ryan (M Sagario 57m), D Ryan, B Holland, J O’Donoghue, T O’Donnell (C Oliver 47m)(D Kilcoyne 77m), R Copeland (D Foley (20m).
J Holland. B Whitehouse (WRU).
SLAM DUNC: Weir crosses for a try