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Munster 18 – Aironi 9 , Musgrave Park
O’Gara Pen(3′) Orquera Pen(13′)
O’Gara Pen(8′) Orquera Pen(64′)
FT Munster 18-9 Aironi
64 mins Munster 18-6 Aironi Orquera slots over his second penalty
61 mins Aironi number 3 has been sin binned for constant infringements at the scrum, O’Callaghan comes on for Munster
56 mins Munster 18-3 Aironi O’Gara now kicking Munster out of sight
46 mins Munster 15-3 Aironi O’Gara adds another three points
42 mins Munster 12-3 Aironi O’Gara slots his fourth penalty of the evening to extend the lead
40 mins All set for the second half, Munster leading by 6 points, Aironi still in with a shout but Tony McGahan’s men should go on from here
HT That’s it for a pretty open half but less then impressive diplay of rugby especially from Munster. The visitors will be happy and are still right in this game, back in 15 mins
39 mins Munster 9-3 Aironi O’Gara slots over another penalty after Aironi collpase the scrum and the referee blows the half time whistle
36 mins Very scrappy so far and every time either team get into each other’s 22, it breaks down, just a few mins till half time with a penalty seperating the two sides
33 mins Clash of heads between Orquera and O’Mahony results in the Munster flanker being replaced by Niall Ronan and Aironi also make a change
28 mins Windy and rainy conditons in Cork are not making it easy for kicking or free flowing rugby but it’s an open game with Aironi playing their part, crowd trying to lift Munster
18 mins Should have been 6-6 but Orquera misses from just inside the 22. Poor kick from the out half and Aironi are coming into this one
13 mins Munster 6-3 Aironi, Despite Munster’s dominance, Aironi are on the board thanks to a straight forward penalty from their out half Orquera
8 mins Munster 6-0 Aironi Another O’Gara penalty sees the home side beginning to establish an early lead. Aironi yet to touch the ball
3 mins Munster 3-0 Aironi Blistering start for Munster as they win back the ball from kick off and phase after phase of pressure leads to a penalty on the left touch line which O’Gara slots over with ease.
1 min Ronan O’Gara gets us underway, referee is Peter Allan
8.28pm Here come the teams at a rather cold Musgrave Park but nice and full all the same
8.10pm Just 20 mins till kick off at Musgrave Park
7pm You can let me know your predictions and thoughts ahead of the game using Twitter @ryanbaileysport
7pm Hello and welcome to live commentary of tonight’s Rabo Direct Pro12 game between Munster and Aironi from Musgrave Park. Kick off is not till 8.30pm tonight but before then you can read our match preview below or follow Alan Conway’s live updates of Edinburgh v Leinster.
Munster: J Murphy; D Howlett, W Chambers, D Barnes, K Earls; R O’Gara, C Murray; W du Preez, D Varley, BJ Botha; D Ryan, P O’Connell capt ; D Leamy, P O’Mahony, J Coughlan.
Replacements: D Fogarty, M Horan, J Hayes, D O’Callaghan, N Ronan, T O’Leary, S Deasy, L Mafi.
Aironi: R Trevisan; S Sinoti, A Masi, G Pavan, G Venditti; L Orquera, T Keats; J Sole, S Favaro, N Cattina; M Bortolami (capt), J Furno; F Staibano, F Ongaro, M Aguero.
Replacements: 16 R Santamaria, S Perugini, L Redolfini, Q Geldenhuys, F Ferrarini, T Tebaldi, N Olivier, G Toniolatti.
Munster will head into the home clash look to avoid three defeats in a row, a rare occurrence that last happened back in the 2006/2007 season.
In their last home Munster went down at home to leaders the Osprey’s and they last lost successive home matches in the competition in the final two games of the 2009/10 season.
Munster won both encounters with Aironi last season and has never lost at home to an Italian team.
Aironi meanwhile are still searching for their first away victory since joining the Celtic league and have picked up just six losing bonus points on the road since they entered the competition last season.
Keith Earls, Conor Murray, Ronan O’Gara, Donnacha Ryan, Paul O’Connell and Denis Leamy are all named in the Munster starting XV for the first time this season while Donncha O’Callaghan is listed among the replacements alongside Tomas O’Leary who is also set to make his seasonal senior debut having had a run out with the A side in Galway last Friday.
Will Chambers is at outside centre which means a switch to 12 for Danny Barnes and the return of O’Connell naturally sees him take over as captain although Peter O’Mahony who assumed that role in O’Connell’s absence retains his place in the starting XV.
Five players – Johne Murphy, Doug Howlett, Barnes, Wian du Preez and O’Mahony – retain their places in the starting XV from the Ospreys game while James Coughlan returns after the clash with the Ospreys through injury
Aironi meanwhile include two debutants in the shape of Andrea Masi and Luciano Orquera both of whom will play their first PRO12 game after spending the past few seasons in France.
Masi will start at outside centre alongside Gilberto Pavan while Orquera will form a new half back line alongside New Zealander Tyson Keats who starts at scrum-half.
Former red Nick Williams, the competition top try scorer with five, misses out with Josh Sole coming into replace him.