Munster v Leicester

The latest instalment in one of European rugby's great rivalries takes place at Thomond Park

Eamon Donoghue Sat, Dec 10
LIVE: Munster v Leicester

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  • Hello and Welcome... Can a rejuvenated Munster tame their old rivals Leicester Tigers at Thomond Park?

    Leicester's  31-19 win at this famous grounds last December was against a very different Munster team. 12 months on and Rassie Erasmus' in-form team have a revenge mission in mind.

    Kick-off is at 3.15pm. Be sure to get in touch throughout - via either Twitter (@DonoghueEamon) or the comments section ('Contact Us' tab).

    Munster v Leicester Tigers Thomond Park, 3.15pm – live BT Sport

  • Here's Gerry Thornley's pre-match lowdown

    MUNSTER: Simon Zebo; Darren Sweetnam, Jaco Taute, Rory Scannell, Keith Earls; Tyler Bleyendaal, Conor Murray; Dave Kilcoyne, Niall Scannell,John Ryan; Donnacha Ryan, Billy Holland; Peter O’Mahony (capt), Tommy O’Donnell, CJ Stander.  Replacements:  Rhys Marshall, Thomas du Toit, Stephen Archer, Jean Kleyn, Jack O’Donoghue, Duncan Williams, Ian Keatley, Andrew Conway.

    LEICESTER TIGERS: George Worth; Adam Thompstone, Manu Tuilagi, Owen Williams, Peter Betham; Freddie Burns, Ben Youngs; Logovi’i Mulipola, Tom Youngs (capt), Greg Bateman; Ed Slater, Graham Kitchener; Mike Fitzgerald, Brendon O’Connor, Lachlan McCaffrey.  Replacements:  George McGuigan, Ellis Genge, Pat Cilliers, Luke Hamilton, Will Evans, Sam Harrison, Jack Roberts, Tom Brady.  Referee:  Romain Poite  (France).

    Previous meetings: Leicester 17-6 Munster; Munster 19-31 Leicester (both December 20015); Munster 6-13 Leicester (January 2007).

    Betting:  Munster (-8) 10/11.

    Forecast:  Munster win.

  • Here's a look at how Pool 1 is looking
    Here's a look at how Pool 1 is looking
  • "Two titans collide again. Were Munster to look across the water for a mirror image of themselves it would probably be Leicester, and vice versa. These two heavyweights and two-time winners of the European Cup may not have lifted the trophy for a while now, but they each boast a rich tradition as standard-bearers of Irish and English club rugby."

    Read Gerry Thornley's brilliant piece on the Munster-Leicester rivalry here

  • Teams are out onto the field. Thomond Park in full voice
  • One late change for Leicester -  Ellis Genge comes in for Greg Bateman.  Logovi’i Mulipola moves over to tighthead
  • And we are underway. Munster claim the kick-off and have control on halfway. Conor Murray's up and under is knocked on by Leicester so the home team have the put-in to the first scrum of the game
  • Munster 0 Leicester 0 (2')  Munster secure the scrum and clear their lines. Leicester with possession just outside their own 22. They look to run it out, but eventually opt to kick - straight to Darren Sweetnam.  
  • Some kick-tennis ended by Zebo taking it to the gain line. CJ Stander then makes a huge break, offloads to Conor Murray on his inside but he runs out of gas. Leicester defence holds firm. Stander hit very hard there and is receiving treatment now - but he's up and will play on.  
  • Leicester win a penalty and force Munster back through a succession of kicks. Keith Earls makes a lovely break however and a wonderful kick by Tyler Bleyendaal is caught brilliantly by former Cork hurler Sweetnam. But his offload is too firm and Rory Scannell knocks on. Leicester win a penalty off their first scrum
  • Munster 0 Leicester 0 (9') Peter O'Mahony gets hands on the Leicester lineout. Sweetnam competes for another high ball excellently and the home team force a penalty. They'll go for the posts
  • Munster 3 Leicester 0 (10')  Tyler Bleyendaal eases over the penalty and Munster take the lead after a strong start
  • Stander claims the restart. Munster clear their lines and on the chase they win a turnover with a well executed choke tackle. Scrum Munster
  • Murray to Bleyendaal and the outhalf floats a lovely kick into the Leicester 22. Leicester win their line-out and clear to Sweetnam, then concede another penalty for going offside. Munster certainly winning the field kicking battle so far
  • Munster 6 Leicester 0 (15') Bleyendaal with another well taken penalty to reward the forwards for their hard work
  • Munster form a maul on halfway. Creeping forward. Bleyendaal lands another big kick on the Leicester back three. They deal with it this time. Kick it back in his direction and he finds touch with a solid kick. Leicester win a penalty for an infringement in the lineout
  • Munster 6 Leicester 0 (21')  Freddie Burns misses his first effort at the posts. Referee  Romain Poite had brought him back a few inches beforehand and it ultimately proved to be out of his range
  • Munster 9 Leicester 0 (23')  Bleyendaal makes it three from three. That one from distance and he's certainly in the groove here
  • Leicester in possession after Conor Murray's messy up and under bounces in their favour. They concede a penalty for holding on however, big hits coming in from Stander and Donnacha Ryan to force that
  • Leicester come in from the side of the maul, Earls almost on the end of Zebo's grubber kick on the advantage. But not quite, and it's back for a penalty.  
  • Munster 12 Leicester 0 (27')  Bleyendaal. Four from four. He's punishing the Tigers for every last mistake
  • The restart is off Munster hands for a Leicester line-out. The Tigers edge over the halfway line but making little progress. Then Leicester concede a penalty for a "neck roll in the maul". TMO having a look
  • No further action and Munster kick the penalty into touch just outside the Leicester 22. Ryan claims the line-out and a maul is formed. A knock on though ends that move and Liecester have it in their own 22 but waste the advantage themselves, they kick away and concede another penalty. No need for Burns to chip there with the advantage
  • Munster 12 Leicester 0 (35')  Yellow card for  Ed Slater - lying in the Munster breakdown. Bleyendaal though misses his first kick of the game
  • Munster 19 Leicester 0 (37')  Munster driving at the Leicester line, Stander and O'Mahony making big yards. Then Conor Murray with a no-look pop pass on his inside and Simon Zebo sneaks in for a TRY. Lovely hands. Conversion slotted and Munster building a healthy lead.  
  • Munster 19 Leicester 0 (38') Leicester hold on and give away another penalty. Munster tap and go, find Keith Earls in space on the left but Conor Murray's one handed offload was forward. Scrum Leicester. "Fields of Athenry" being sung aloud at Thomond Park.
  • HT  Munster 19 Leicester 0 - A dominant first half by Munster. With Murray and Bleyendaal conducting things. And the pack fighting hard but maintaining their discipline. A well deserved lead at the break.  
  • Munster 19 Leicester 0  Leicester get the second half underway. Zebo claims it. The visitors still have a little over a minute left being down to 14 men.
  • Munster 19 Leicester 0 (42') Ed Slater is back on the field so the hosts restored to 15. They have possession inside the Munster half
  • Another Munster choke tackle as Ben Youngs takes it into contact. Scrum Munster.  
  • Rory Scannell's kick goes out on the full - although replays show that it in fact did hit the line - so Leicester line-out back where he kicked it. And it's in crooked. So scrum Munster once more
  • Free-kick for Leicester from that scrum, but they hand it over again with a knock on. A scrappy start to the second half. A big, big hit there from Jaco Taute to force the turnover.
  • Munster 24 Leicester 0 (50') Munster drive their way into the Leicester 22, and then keep on going. Set up by a powerful driving maul off the line-out and finished by Taute.
  • Munster 26 Leicester 0 (50') Bleyendaal adds the conversion. Munster in total control here. Still half an hour left, bonus point?
  • Sam Harrsion on for Ben Youngs with 25 minutes left to play. So no doubting Conor Murray has won the battle of the 9s here
  • Munster 31 Leicester 0 (56') TRY time! Fine break from Sweetnam, and an incredible offload to Taute charging on his inside left. He held himself mid-air and left it on a plate for the South African centre. Conversion missed
  • Another turnover ball for Munster. Murray then lofts up a Garryowen to put Leicester back into their own half.
  • "No arms, and dangerous charge" - yellow card for Manu Tuilagi. It's getting worse for the visitors
  • Munster 31 Leicester 0 (60')  Penalty goes to the line. Maul formed from the lineout and Munster are pressing for the bonus point. But it's turned over at the breakdown and cleared for touch
  • Munster 31 Leicester 0 (62') Munster force it a little again. Concede a penalty for holding on. Duncan Williams is on for Murray - an eye turning to next week and the return leg. A bonus point still on offer here though
  • Munster 31 Leicester 0 (66')  Zebo does excellently to catch Roberts, who had the tryline in sight, and Munster then turnover once more. But go on to give away a penalty at scrumtime. Leicester kick for the corner.
  • Munster are holding up the ball on their own try line. Stander then rips the ball and Bleyendaal clears his lines. Brilliant defence. Leicester regroup and are back outside the Munster 22
  • Munster 31 Leicester 0 (70') Donnacha Ryan drives Leicester back with a big tackle, then O'Mahony rips the ball and Niall Scannell claims the up and under. Munster are after the bonus try.
  • PENALTY TRY! Taute denied a hat-trick as he is pulled down when chasing his own kick. Bonus point secured.  
  • Munster 38 Leicester 0 (73')  George Worth picks up a yellow so Leicester back down to 14. Bleyendaal slots the conversion. Question marks over whether Taute would have reached the ball before being taken out, but Munster will certainly take it!
  • CJ Stander is named man of the match - 20 carries, 10 tackles. Powerful.
  • Munster 38 Leicester 0 (78')  Munster win a penalty off their scrum, successful lineout follows but a knock on gives Leicester possession back just outside their own 22.
  • FT  Munster 38 Leicester 0 - Revenge indeed for last year's defeat. Two from two for Munster, they top pool 1 with a game in hand. Leicester's biggest ever European hammering. What a performance!
  • It's the first time Leicester have been kept scoreless in Europe.  

    Stander -  "Everyone stepped up from the forwards to the backline. A great performance but back to the wheel on Monday and we work hard for next weekend.

    "We need to celebrate the small victories, but when you wake up tomorrrow morning it's back to the basics!"

  • So that's that. Bonus point wins for Munster, Ulster and Leinster so far this weekend. No pressure tomorrow Connacht!

    A famous win for Munster, their fine season rolls on. And revenge for last year's Thomond Park defeat will be sweet. But Leicester will be out for revenge of their own next weekend.  

    But that's it for today, be sure to keep an eye out for the match report arriving soon on the site - and of course, thanks for joining us!

  • FT  Munster 38 Leicester 0