Scarlets 14 – 17 Munster
Munster moved to the top of Pool A in the Heineken Cup with a hard earned three point victory over Scarlets on Saturday afternoon. Ronan O’Gara,who was playing in his one hundredth game in the competition proved the hero, kicking four penalties for the winners.
The home side made the better start and led 8-0 after ten minutes. Aaron Shingler touched down for a try after only four minutes and Rhys Priestland scored a penalty after eight minutes. O’Gara got Munster off the mark after 26 minute to make it 8-3. A try from Niall Ronan three minutes later tied the game. Munster finished the half the stronger and a late penalty from the out half left them ahead 11-8 at the break.
Priestland drew the sides level early in the second half, but O’Gara struck again in the 55th minute to give the Irish province back the lead. The same player added a fourth penalty to make it 11-17 to Munster with just twenty minutes left on the clock. However, the Welsh men were not surrendering without a fight and Stephen Jones knocked over a late penalty to leave it 17-14. That was as close as the Scarlets got to clawing back Munster and the Irish held out for the win.
The two sides meet in Thomond Park in the return fixture next weekend and another tight, intense affair looks in order. The win today gives Munster the advantage in the pool and full points in a weeks time would make them very difficult to catch.