Planet Rugby

Zebo stars for Munster

18th February 2012 17:12

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Simon Zebo Heineken Cup 2012 Northampton v Munster

Key late try: Simon Zebo

A late try from left wing Simon Zebo helped Munster to claim all five points at Stadio Monigo as they overcame Treviso 35-14.

Munster have been indifferent away from home of late, but Treviso couldn't live with the Irish side, who won this one with with consummate ease.

The Italians have lost their last four games in all competitions, and it was easy to see why early on here.

Munster started brightly and had a try within the first five minutes. A great block down from Danny Barnes saw him dive over for the opening try of the contest, Ronan O'Gara adding the extras.

The visitors then added their second try after ten minutes as they began to dominate proceedings, Zebo eluding the Treviso defence to score. O'Gara again made no mistake with the conversion and Munster were cantering.

O'Gara then stepped up to punish a Treviso high tackle with a penalty to put seventeen between them.

Treviso were struggling to deal with the Munster threat, and a third try for the Irish looked imminent. Indeed that came soon after, a brilliant O'Gara grubber kick putting Johne Murphy in behind the Italian defence for a third try, converted again by O'Gara.

It looked like staying the same until half time, but Treviso gave themselves a glimmer of hope right on half time when Mick O'Driscoll was sin-binned, and Fabio Semenzato broke away from a scrum to score a try, Willem De Waal converting to leave it 24-7 at the break.

Things got better for the hosts after half time when Munster were reduced to thirteen men, and the Italian side scored a try through Corniel Van Zyl with half-an-hour to play, De Waal with the extras.

Treviso were very much back in this one, but when O'Gara landed another penalty approaching the final quarter, Munster were also now back to a full compliment of players again.

Both sides tested each other in the final quarter to no avail, but with two minutes remaining, Munster made sure of the bonus point when Zebo dived over to round off an impressive Irish performance.

The scorers:

For Treviso:
Tries: Semenzato, Van Zyl
Con: De Waal 2

For Munster:
Tries: Barnes, Zebo 2, Murphy
Con: O'Gara 3
Pen: O'Gara 3

Benetton Treviso: 15 Ludovico Nitoglia, 14 Tommaso Iannone, 13 Ezio Galon, 12 Alberto Sgarbi, 11 Brendan Williams, 10 Willem De Waal, 9 Fabio Semenzato, 8 Marco Filippucci, 7 Benjamin Vermaak, 6 Paul Derbyshire, 5 Corniel Van Zyl, 4 Antonio Pavanello (captain), 3 Pedro Di Santo, 2 Franco Sbaraglini, 1 Matteo Muccignat.
Repalcements: 16 Enrico Ceccato, 17 Augusto Allori, 18 Ignacio Fernandez Rouyet, 19 Valerio Bernaḅ, 20 Gonzalo Padṛ, 21 Gonzalo Garcia, 22 Edoardo Gori, 23 Alberto Di Bernardo.

Munster: 15 Denis Hurley, 14 Johne Murphy, 13 Danny Barnes, 12 Lifeimi Mafi, 11 Simon Zebo, 10 Ronan O'Gara, 9 Tomas O'Leary, 8 James Coughlan, 7 Peter O'Mahony, 6 Dave O'Callaghan, 5 Mick O'Driscoll (capt), 4 Donnacha Ryan, 3 BJ Botha, 2 Damien Varley, 1 Wian du Preez.
Replacements: 16 Denis Fogarty, 17 Marcus Horan, 18 Stephen Archer, 19 B Holland, 20 Tommy O'Donnell, 21 D Williams, 22 S Deasy, 23 Felix Jones.

Referee: Neil Hennessey

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