RaboDirect PRO12 semi-final – Munster Rugby fail to qualify for final

Munster endured more misery this evening after a heartbreaking 16-15 loss away to Glasgow Warriors in the RaboDirect PRO12 semi-final playoff.


In what was a scrappy first half hour of play, the main highlight was the nicely worked try from Munster that allowed captain Damian Varley to get over the line. Glasgow kept coming though, and although they found themselves in a 7-0 hold after Varley’s try was converted by Ian Keatley, they kept fighting.


Munster’s Felix Jones had to leave the pitch through injury midway through the first period, with JJ Hanrahan coming on to replace him. By the half though it was 9-7 to the home side, with Finn Russell kicking three out of four penalties to put his team in the driving seat heading into the second half.


If Munster fans were concerned that their recent questionable form would come back to haunt them, it certainly seemed that way early in the second half. Gordon Reid went over for the Scottish side early on, with Russell again tacking on critical extra points with the boot. That famous Munster spirit kicked into effect almost immediately though, as Sean Dougall went down the other end of the pitch and himself scored a try. Keatley however was unable to convert.


From there both teams traded heavy blows in the middle of the park, with neither able to provide any really spark to put them in a position to take real control of the game. Andrew Conway trying his very best to create something for Munster whenever he was on the ball, he carried with confidence. Keatley did kick a big penalty in the sixty-sixth minute, setting the game up for what looked to be a big finish.


As the game entered the final ten minutes, desperation began to creep in for both teams. Tommy Seymour made a brilliant interception near the end of the game and looked to be on his way to giving the Warriors the try, and with it a certain win. Simon Zebo had other ideas however, as his lung bursting run and subsequent last ditch tackle kept his team in the game. It wasn’t to be enough though, as Glasgow clung on and held firm to book their place in the RaboDirect PRO12 grand final on May 31st.


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