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Glasgow 15-16 Munster

Ryan Wilson - pic © Al Ross/Novantae Photography
Ryan Wilson - pic © Al Ross/Novantae Photography

League leaders Munster have been in imperious form ever since that match at Thomond Park. Ian Keatley opened the scoring with a penalty after just 8 minutes, just reward for strong opening phases the men in red put together. That the penalty was for something as clueless as not retreating behind the kicker perhaps symbolises Glasgows current malaise.

Things got worse as Keatley combined with Andrew Conway for a cross-field kick that Nigel Owens adjudged to have bounced backwards and into Conway’s grateful arms.

Glasgow had their first chance of points with a couple of penalties back to back, but Peter Horne was only able to slot the second of them after Munster were caught off their feet. Again.

Even Glasgow’s best early break was rewarded with misery: Horne leaving the field with a leg injury.

Dave Kilcoyne was binned for the visitors to give Glasgow a man advantage; Munster took this discomfort in their stride with a penalty towards the end of the sin bin period. Glasgow on the other hand couldn’t profit from a driving maul, continued to leak tackles and were generally woeful under the high ball. Needless to say Tommy Seymour, Glasgow’s best in the air, didn’t get anything near him.

Ali Price was the bright spark for Glasgow, but even he knocked on just before half time, too busy looking at Rory Clegg (on for Horne) rather than the ball coming down from the lineout, that he intended to pass to him.

Half-time: Glasgow 3-13 Munster

Glasgow came out in the second half looking like they’d had a rocket at half time, but they were still knocking balls on and once again, even the good breaks were balanced out by misfortune or injury – Rory Hughes also giving way with a nasty looking knee twist just 5 minutes into the half.

Glasgow looked much improved, but Munster seemed content to sit off them and soak it up waiting for the mistake – much as teams have done to Scotland for years. Rory Clegg kicked well from hand, pegging Munster back in the corners. But when Glasgow couldn’t put the phases together without error, did Munster really care that much?

The game sparked into life on the hour mark where after just one such kick from Clegg, Ali Price took the ball behind the lineout and scampered past half the Munster team on a jinking run before diving over behind the posts. In addition to closing the gap to just 3 points, it also showed the Scotstoun faithful at least someone on the pitch was interested and the noise level tripled, back to the usual bustling atmosphere.

The second try from Glasgow was also a superb solo effort this time from Mark Bennett, who snatched a smart if high offload from Tommy Seymour and backed his own pace to run from well inside his own half even with Price on his inside. Clegg missed the conversion – things might have been different had he passed to Price – but Glasgow were finally in the lead with 9 minutes left to defend it.

An Ian Keatley drop goal on a penalty advantage regained the lead for Munster and a frantic 3 minute struggle for the win. Munster reverted to the wall of red that had been present from most of the match, and Glasgow were slowly marched from half way to their own 22 before Nigel Owens awarded a scrum to the visitors.

Munster gratefully ran out the clock from the scrum before hoofing it into touch.

Referee: Nigel Owens (WRU)

Attendance: 7,351

SRBlog Man of the Match: Another frantic, stuttering performance from the Warriors who are going backwards at a rate of knots thanks to precious little depth in key areas when their internationals are away. The bright spark all game (apart from the Bennett try) was scrum-half Ali Price, who added zip and pace along with his individual try that ignited the game as a contest.

15 Responses

  1. Only saw the second half but what a half hearted attempt that was from glasgow. So little effort from the forwards, so little creativity in the backs. Munster controlled well by owens, so no excuses from glasgow.

    Feel as a glasgow fan we have been spoiled with some great times recently, so disappointed as the bar has been set high, but tonight looked poor.

  2. The only line breaks last night resulted in tries for Price and Bennett. The rest was just running into Munster tackling. Very disappointed as I thought Glasgow would make up for the humiliation received after the last away match.
    You always know Munster are up for a scrap. If you don’t meet that with the same intensity, you’re in trouble. Glasgow couldn’t match them last night. Worrying times indeed.

  3. I cannot hide my frustration . The table is not looking good. 5 losses, in 6th place and 5 points adrift of the top 4. Need to start winning home and away , From what I recall the worst top 4 qualifier in recent years was 7 losses.

    I suggest one more loss and its a short season. I only hope the 6N performances are worth the sacrifice for Glasgow.

    As for the faithful Glasgow fans,here is the outlook. The band wagon supporters will drop off, the gate returns will drop, reduced income, wage constraints, player defections, poor morale,ultimately poor international performance. Something is wrong and its time to voice your frustration. It will only take Edinburgh to beat Glasgow (which is looking likely)and it is a very long way back.

    With regret, building a team with the replacement standoff and play maker that has been carted off on all his recent outings, feels very wrong to me. Sorry PH is not match fit IMO.

    Something at Glasgow is not right…..We might manage to shake off the hanger on supporters, but what will be left to play for.

    1. With Rennie coming next year I can see us really challenging in Europe. I wouldn’t be too disheartened by the last couple of results as we have the quality to bounce back.

      1. Well the table is neither an optimist or a pessimist.

        Ulster are above us by a point with a game in hand and as I see it there is daylight between Ulster and the top 4.

        It is worth a look back at previous tables to see how many losses you can sustain and still be in the top 4.

        No excuses about the pitch this season .

  4. Looking on the bright side, it will kill off the parking problems in Scotstoun when the bandwagons leave.

  5. This week is the ‘acid test’. Away to Racing in Paris. A tough match, and the side has generally not been playing incisive rugby.
    We’ve relied on brief flashes of brilliance, but need to start to play ‘as you find it’ rugby, with passing moves and good running lines to beat defenders. Much too predictable for Glasgow recently and unable to get past the fast defences.
    The forwards also need to start fighting for the ball. This insipid passivity isn’t good enough. I’d like to see Johnnie Gray and Brian ‘long surname’ in the boiler-room at lock. We’ll need our biggest grumpiest team as Racine will target us up the middle.
    I can’t subscribe to your point of view Bulldog, it’s simply too damning and depressing and I don’t think they’ve reached that point. I think you need a couple of stiff drinks.

    1. Oh I hope I am proved wrong , not pessamistic just realistic, Glasgow have just lost the last 3 games, 2 at home. We are likely to be dependant on other results in the Pro12.

      The table is not lying and I am not drinking. I am frustrated , not deluded. The acid test for the Champions Cup is this week.

      Unlike you, I do not think Glasgow can , on the current outcomes , ride out the second half of the season without a loss.

      Have a drink on me.

  6. Glasgow have looked physically behind the curve this season. While Munster, Ulster and the Ospreys have taken physicality to new heights this season we look weak and poorly conditioned

      1. Good – Scottish – available

        pick 2

        The simple fact is with two pro-teams and a limited player pool, both Glas and Edi must suffer during international periods.

        This will persist until the Pro12 is restructured, unless the clubs go further down the track of “journeyman foreigners”.

        These players have their place, a few adds variety and plugs gaps while players develop, but I don’t think its best for the game in Scotland overall.

  7. How about this team for Racine.
    The ugliest and gruntuiest pack we can muster.
    Hogg, Seymour, Dunbar, Bennett, Bulamakau, Russell, Price, Strauss, Wilson, Favoro, Gray, Alasinu’use, Puafisi, Brown, Reid.

    1. Like it, thats more like it! Backs that are happy to have a go and some real grunt in the forwards!

  8. Pragmatic Optomist (sic — Optimist), “Racine” was a French playwright, so perhaps we can expect something dramatic in the upcoming game. Certainly we are going to need forwards with “attitude” to counter their massive pack. Strauss, as we know, is a very good ball-carrier at his best but looked decidedly out-of-sorts against Munster. Alainu’uese has massive presence but has looked a bit ponderous in the lineout and the loose. Nevertheless, physicality will be crucial to this game, so I agree in general with your horses-for-courses selection.

  9. AC, I agree with you about Strauss having lost his confidence. Many of them seem to have misplaced it. I’m hoping the old adage about ‘form being temporary, but class being permanent’ still applies. Someone said recently that Strauss is much too upright going into contact, and he needs to angle his body position more. Since they said this I’ve been watching him, and it is true. It seems a simple thing to correct, but he isn’t doing it.
    Given the enormity of the Racing pack, our forwards need to find ways to move them around. (remember Toulouse & Toulon)
    There is no doubt that Glasgow have played poorly in the last few matches, whatever ‘positives’ that Gregor manages to take out of it.
    They need to play their brand of passing and offloading rugby. Playing Racing at their own game just won’t work.
    Glasgow always seem to struggle against the blitz defence, and they need to practice their chip kicks and set moves to keep Racing on the back foot.
    I’m looking forward to see whether the Glasgow forwards can stand toe to toe with Racing on Saturday. We’re due a good game and this could be it.

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