Munster come through unscathed
Relief as O’Connell is all set for Lions
Munster’s Paddy Butler goes over for a try at Stadio XXV Aprile, Parma, last night. Photograph: Inpho
ZEBRE 25 MUNSTER 27
There was a sigh of relief last night as Paul O’Connell came through unscathed before boarding the Lions convey.That Munster got the win came purely as a bonus.
Johnny Murphy, Paddy Butler and BJ Botha were all on the mark for Munster, who laboured throughout. Indeed, the writing seemed to be on the cards for the visitors at one stage as indiscipline and poor defending saw Zebre go down the tunnel with a 22-14 lead. This after early tries by Murphy and Butler had set the ball rolling for Rob Penney’s men.
Munster’s final 40-minute shift of the season was impressive. Botha scored a try with his first touch whilst the boot of Ian Keatley saw them nudge into the lead with 15 minutes remaining.Zebre pushed hard during the final quarter but to no avail.
ZEBRE: R Trevisan; G Venditti, A Benettin, G Garcia, S Sinoti; D Halangahu, T Tebaldi; M Aguero, D Giazzon, D Ryan; J Sole, M Bortolami (capt); F Ferrarini, M Bergamasco, A Van Schalkwyk. Replacements: A Manici for Giazzon (47 mins), L Leibson for Ryan (57 mins), F Cristiano for Van Schalkwyk (79 mins).
MUNSTER: D Hurley; R O’Mahony, C Laulala, I Keatley, J Murphy; JJ Hanrahan, C Sheridan; D Kilcoyne, M Sherry, J Ryan; B Holland, P O’Connell (capt); D O’Callaghan, S Dougall, P Butler. Replacements: D Williams for Sheridan (55 mins), I Nagle for Holland (58 mins), Niall Ronan for Dougall (58 mins), BJ Botha for Ryan (63 mins) J Cronin for Kilcoyne (63 mins), C Bohane 66 for Hanrahan.
Referee: A McMenemy (SRU).