Home team Away Team


  • Penalty goals: O'Gara (5),
15 - 9


  • Penalty goals: Farrell (3),
  • European Rugby Champions Cup
  • Pool 1
  • 8th Dec 2012
  • KO 18:00
  • Ground: Thomond Park, Limerick
  • Att: 26,500

Heineken Cup: Munster beat Saracens but bonus may be key

Last updated: 8th December 2012   Subscribe to RSS Feed

Conor Murray of Munster passes the ball

Conor Murray spins out a pass for Munster

Dave O Callaghan Saracens Kelly Brown Muster

Dave O'Callaghan of Munster tangles with Saracens' Kelly Brown

Related links


Also see

Munster joined Saracens at the top of Heineken Cup Pool 1 after a 15-9 victory over their English rivals at Thomond Park.

Sarries had won two from two heading for Limerick but struggled to cope with Munster's intensity in front of a 26,000 crowd.

Despite that they could have earned a share of the spoils if Owen Farrel had brought his kicking boots. Unfortunatley one of the heroes of Twickenham a week ago missed four kicks from seven attempts at goal.

By contrast veteran points machine Ronan O'Gara kicked all five of his penalty chances for the hosts and that ultimately proved the difference between the sides.

But Farrell did kick a penalty two minutes from time to earn Saracens a losing bonus point that may prove crucial, with the sides now locked on 10 points apiece after three games and set to meet again in Watford next weekend.

With the referee's whistle an almost constant accompaniment to the spluttering action, flowing rugby was at a premium, although Conor Murray almost put Simon Zebo in under the posts in the opening minutes after a break from a lineout.

By then O'Gara had nudged Munster ahead and shortly afterwards a misfiring Farrell was short from 42 metres.

Donncha O'Callaghan and Rhys Gill were sin-binned following a fight and O'Gara doubled the lead before the sides shared a couple of late penalties and Munster led 9-3 at the break.

Just after the re-start Farrell was short with a 40-metre penalty, but within 60 seconds he had another chance from closer in and he knocked this one over.

O'Gara cooly converted two more penalties to stretch the lead and Farrell missed a straightforward penalty dragged wide, before Will Fraser was denied at the corner by brilliant defence from Doug Howlett.

Felix Jones had to make a try-saving tackle on David Strettle as the England winger headed for the corner and after Chris Ashton was taken out off the ball, Farrell had a chance to earn the bonus point with seven minutes left.

He missed yet again but was given one final chance two minutes from time, from an almost identical position after a Munster lineout offence, and this time he made no mistake.

Sky Bet Odds:

Click Here for Your Free Bet
Forthcoming European Rugby Champions Cup Fixtures
European Rugby Champions Cup
Friday 5th December
European Rugby Champions Cup
19:45Montpellier vs Bath
Saturday 6th December
13:00Sale vs Saracens
17:30Munster vs Clermont Auvergne
19:45Ulster vs Scarlets
13:00Benetton Treviso vs Northampton
15:15Ospreys vs Racing Metro 92
Sunday 7th December
13:00Castres vs Wasps
15:15Harlequins vs Leinster
17:30Leicester vs Toulon
15:15Toulouse vs Glasgow
Friday 12th December
19:45Bath vs Montpellier
Saturday 13th December
17:15Saracens vs Sale
19:45Leinster vs Harlequins
15:15Toulon vs Leicester
13:00Glasgow vs Toulouse
15:15Northampton vs Benetton Treviso
17:15Racing Metro 92 vs Ospreys
Sunday 14th December
15:15Clermont Auvergne vs Munster
13:00Wasps vs Castres
17:15Scarlets vs Ulster
Saturday 17th January
TBCSaracens vs Munster
TBCSale vs Clermont Auvergne
TBCHarlequins vs Wasps
TBCLeinster vs Castres
TBCLeicester vs Scarlets

Experts & Blogs

Phil Edwards

Phil Edwards

Read the thoughts and opinions of Phil Edwards with skysports.com