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United Rugby Championship: Munster secure hard-fought 10-3 win over Stormers

Munster's Jack Crowley in action against the Stormers
Munster's Jack Crowley in action against the Stormers

URC: Munster v Stormers

Munster (10) 10

Tries: Edogbo Con: Crowley Pen: Crowley

Stormers (0) 3

Pen: Mngomezulu

Munster secured a hard-fought 10-3 win over the Stormers in their United Rugby Championship game at Thomond Park.

Edwin Edogbo crossed in the first half, with Jack Crowley contributing a conversion and a penalty as the hosts went in 10-0 to the good at the break.

Sacha Feinburg-Mngomezulu kicked his side's only points of the game with a penalty in the second half.

Munster managed to hold on to their lead in an arm-wrestle of a second half to clinch a gritty home win.

The return of captain Peter O'Mahony and fellow Ireland World Cup stars Tadhg Beirne and Conor Murray strengthened head coach Graham Rowntree's line-up and the champions' victory extended their 100% win record against the Stormers to four from four.

The two sides last faced each other in last season's URC final, with Munster defeating the South African outfit 19-14 in Cape Town.

The game got off to a cautious start, with both sides struggling to gain the ascendency.

Crowley opened the scoring for the hosts with a penalty in the opening quarter and the momentum appeared to swing in Munster's direction.

The Irish province grew into the game but could not capitalise despite dominating the early exchanges in terms of territory and possession.

The Stormers occasionally looked dangerous, with a brilliant solo run from Leolin Zas stopped by the Munster defence just short of the try-line.

The home side continued to apply pressure and Stormers captain Neethling Fouche was shown a yellow card for repeated scrum infringements.

Munster quickly made the most of their one-man advantage, with second-row Edogbo driving over from short distance for what turned out to be the only try of the game.

Crowley added the extras to increase his side's lead.

The visitors finally got off the mark with that Feinburg-Mngomezulu penalty shortly into the second half and the Stormers returned to their full complement as their captain returned from the sin-bin.

The remaining half hour was back-and-forth with the Stormers still within touching distance but Munster's impressive defence prevented them from getting a foothold in the game.

It was a tense last few minutes for Munster, with Stormers battling until the final moments but they ultimately coughed the ball up, allowing a relieved looking Crowley to kick the ball into the stands for the final whistle in this low-scoring affair.

Munster: S Daly; Nash, Frisch, Nankivell, McCarthy; Crowley, Casey; Loughman, Buckley, J Ryan; Edogbo, Beirne; O'Mahony, Hodnett, Coombes.

Replacements: Moore, J. Wycherley, Archer, Ahern, O'Donoghue, Murray, R Scannell, Kendellen.

Stormers: Gelant; Loader, Nel, Mngomezulu, Zas; J du Plessis, de We; Sithole, Dweba, Fouche; van Heerden, Porter; Engelbrecht, Dixon, Roos.

Replacements: Venter, Vermaak, Harris, Smith, Morabe, Jantjies, Blommetjies, Davids.

Referee: Sam Grove-White (SRU)