Munster investigating fan’s interaction with Bayonne player during touchline scuffle

Footage shows a fan reach from the terraced section of the stand to grab jersey of Konstantin Mikautadze

Munster have opened an investigation after a fan appeared to reach out from the stands to make contact with a Bayonne player during Saturday evening’s Champions Cup match at Thomond Park.

In the 45th minute of the 17-17 draw, footage shows a fan reaching from the terraced section of the stand to grab the jersey of Konstantin Mikautadze. The Georgian lock was one of a number of players involved in an altercation on the sideline that spilt over towards the terrace.

In the footage, Mikautadze approaches the spectator after he sees that his shirt is being pulled and is subsequently restrained by Munster’s Tom Ahern.

A number of children can be seen in the vicinity of the fan who pulled Mikautadze towards the stand.

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“Munster Rugby are aware of an incident involving a supporter at last night’s game,” the province said in a statement to The Irish Times.

“We have commenced an investigation into same and will be taking appropriate action once the investigation is complete.”

Munster were leading 14-3 at the time of the incident. Bayonne recovered to score a try in the 76th minute to secure a draw.

EPCR, the competition’s organisers, has been contacted for comment.

Ireland Sevens make history

Ireland made history by beating New Zealand for the first time in the men’s World Series competition. Playing against the Kiwis in the quarter-final stages of the Cape Town leg of the series, a Terry Kennedy hat-trick propelled Ireland to a dominant 36-21 victory.

Kennedy’s first score with just a minute on the clock set up a blistering start, Ireland scoring four first half tries with Zac Ward also crossing. He added a second after the break as Hugo Lennox got on the scoresheet, the two second half tries a useful buffer as New Zealand responded with all of their 21 points after the break.

Ireland had reached that quarter-final after an impressive pool campaign featuring wins over USA, Australia and the hosts South Africa.

They failed to back up their New Zealand win in the semi-final against Argentina. An early chance to score in the first minute went begging, instead the Argentinians raced into a 26-5 lead. Late scores Lennox and Chay Mullins proved to be nothing but consolation efforts in a 26-19 defeat. Ireland went on to contest the third-place playoff, only to lose in extra-time to Fiji.

On the women’s side of the draw, Ireland beat Great Britain in a playoff to finish seventh after being knocked out of the cup at the quarter-final stage by Australia.

In the seventh-placed playoff, Beibhinn Parsons notched a double either side of half-time while Amee-Leigh Murphy Crowe scored Ireland’s other try.

Ireland had previously lost to GB in the pool stages 15-19. A further defeat to New Zealand (33-7) alongside a comfortable 39-14 victory over Brazil were Ireland’s other pool results. In that victory, Murphy Crowe notched a hat-trick while Parsons, Megan Burns, Emily Lane and Aoibheann Riley also crossed.

Blackrock stunned in women’s AIL

Reigning champions Blackrock suffered a stunning 37-14 defeat to Old Belvedere in the women’s AIL. Lining out at home at Ollie Campbell Park on Saturday, Minnona Nunstedt and Emma Tilly crossed twice for Belvedere with Elise O’Byrne-White added their fifth score.

Blackrock responded with efforts from Koren Dunne and Aoife Wafer, but despite lining out with a number of Irish internationals including Wafer, Dorothy Wall and Hannah O’Connor – all in the backrow – Blackrock were well beaten.

In the league’s other action, Railway Union scored 14 tries in an 88-19 hammering of Suttonians at Park Avenue, while Cooke worked past Galwegians 10-34 on their travels to Crowley Park.

Wicklow conceded their match to UL Bohemians, injuries leaving them unable to field a team.

The league is to take a break for two months with the next round of fixtures not scheduled until February 10th. The Celtic Challenge, the competition featuring teams from Ireland, Scotland and Wales, which will also feature a number of AIL players, starts on December 29th.

Heading into the break, UL Bohs remain five points clear of Railway at the top of the table. Old Belvedere and Blackrock round out the top four.

In the division 1A of the men’s AIL, Dylan Donnelan, who played twice for Leinster earlier this season as injury cover, notched two tries for Clontarf in their 27-31 win over Lansdowne. Leinster secondrow Brian Deeny also crossed for Clontarf, while former Connacht wing Peter Sullivan, who left Jersey Reds after they folded earlier this season, scored a double for the defeated Lansdowne side.

Clontarf remain top of the league, while Terenure move up to fourth after their victory over City of Armagh. Shannon also moved up to seventh after beating Trinity.

Number: 60

The distance in metres of Ciarán Frawley’s penalty that wrapped up Leinster’s win over La Rochelle.

Quote

He’s speaking to me after every penalty. We’ll work together now.

Referee Matthew Carley wasn’t impressed with Leinster’s co-captain system, telling Garry Ringrose he would prefer to speak to him due to what he saw as James Ryan’s overzealous nature when looking for decisions.

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Nathan Johns

Nathan Johns

Nathan Johns is an Irish Times journalist