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Jack Crowley pulling the strings as Munster march on

June 14th, 2024 8:00 AM

By Sean Holland

Jack Crowley pulling the strings as Munster march on Image
Player of the match Jack Crowley.

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BY SEÁN HOLLAND

BACKBONED by West Cork steel, Munster will face off against the Glasgow Warriors in what promises to be a thrilling United Rugby Championship semi-final at Thomond Park this Saturday (6pm).

Riding high off the momentum of ten league wins on the bounce, including their dominant 23-7 victory over Ospreys in the quarter-final, Munster are two victories away from back-to-back URC titles.

The quarter-final triumph was marked by a standout performance from former Bandon RFC star Jack Crowley, who was deservedly named man-of-the-match.

Along with some impressive place kicking, scoring 13 points in total, Crowley’s tactical kicking game never allowed the Welsh outfit to settle into the contest. Rosscarbery’s John Hodnett and Skibbereen’s Gavin Coombes also started for Munster and played big parts in the victory as their pack was dominant from beginning to end.

‘The important thing is we are through to next week but there are a few areas we’ll look at improving, in our attack particularly and a small bit with our discipline,’ Crowley said.

Munster started the brightest when veteran Simon Zebo scored inside two minutes. Ospreys hit back almost immediately when Keelan Giles broke through to help level proceedings at 7-7. This is as good as it got for Ospreys, as a Niall Scannell try along with some accurate place kicking from Crowley helped push Munster further and further ahead as they cantered home to victory.

The red army will face stiff opposition this Saturday, as Glasgow Warriors come to Thomond Park off the back defeating the Stormers, 27-10. The two met in the knockout stages last season, with Munster coming out on top 14-5 and in the early stages of this season’s league campaign, Munster again winning by 40-29, so the Scots will have revenge on their minds. A victory on Saturday would all-likely set up an all Irish final between Munster and Leinster, who play the Vodacom Bulls, at 3pm in Loftus Versfeld, South Africa.

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