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Munster power past Scarlets with bonus-point victory

16 Feb 2024 2 minute read

Clinical Munster ensured Scarlets’ poor run against Irish provinces continued as they suffered a ninth consecutive defeat in going down 42-7 in Llanelli.

Scarlets have not won against Irish opposition since beating Connacht 41-36 in March 2021 and they never looked like breaking that unenviable record as Munster ran out convincing bonus-point winners.

Number eight Gavin Coombes scored two tries for Munster with Jack O’Sullivan, Thomas Ahern, Shay McCarthy and Sean O’Brien also going over and Joey Carbery converted all six.

Joe Roberts scored Scarlets’ try which Charlie Titcombe converted.

Torn hamstring

Dan Jones led out Scarlets on his 150th appearance for the club and his first since tearing a hamstring back in September.

His side had the better of the early exchanges but Munster were first on the scoreboard when Coombes drove over from close range.

The hosts continued to struggle in the scrum by conceding a number of penalties and this gave Munster easy attacking platforms.

Heroic defence

The Welsh region were then placed under considerable pressure and eventually their heroic defence caved in when Coombes powered across for his second.

Carbery again converted to give his side a deserved 14-0 interval lead.

Seven minutes after the interval, Scarlets changed their half-backs in an attempt to revive their fortunes and it paid immediate dividends when from a line-out on half-way, Roberts powered through a gap in midfield for an excellent individual try.

For the first time in the game, Scarlets briefly threatened an upset but their opponents soon upped their game. First Mike Haley was forced into touch by a cover tackle from Ioan Nicholas before Conor Murray dummied his way over from a five-metre scrum only to be denied by the TMO for an earlier obstruction.

However, the visitors were not to be denied with replacement O’Sullivan crashing over for his side’s third to put daylight between the teams.

Any hopes of a Scarlets comeback were soon extinguished when Ahern scored their bonus-point try before late tries from O’Brien and McCarthy emphasised their superiority.

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