Racing Metro 92 upset former Champions Munster

Racing Metro ended their two year wait to win at home when they upset former Heineken Cup champions Munster 22-17 at Stade de France.

Olly Barkley turned in a masterful performance on his debut for his new club

“You don’t win games like that against teams like Munster without a really
good team spirit,” said Barkley, who finished with 14 points in the Paris

Barkley’s counterpart, Ireland fly-half Ronan O’Gara, knocked over an early
penalty as Munster dominated early play.

It wasn’t until the quarter-hour mark, however, that the Irish province scored
their first try, flanker Sean Dougall bouncing off a couple of weak tackles
to crash over from short distance, O’Gara adding the extras.

Barkley, making his first appearance for Racing since joining from Bath earlier
this month, pulled back three points with a long-range penalty.

Against the run of play, a fumbled O’Gara pass by Munster skipper Doug Howlett,
the former All Black, saw Racing counterpart Jacque Cronje hack through.

Home scrum-half Maxime Machenaud was on hand to race through and touch down
for a try Barkley converted to draw the scores level.

O’Gara limped off just after the half hour, and half-back partner Connor Murray
was lucky to escape a sin-binning after taking out Karim Ghezal off the ball
as he chased through a charged-down kick with the line begging.

Barkley was successful with two more penalties either side of the break, but
went wide with his fourth effort.

Munster full-back Ian Keatley then saw his attempt miss, but wing Simon Zebo
provided some much-needed impetus after a quick play of the ball at a lineout
on the halfway line, outpacing Mirco Bergamasco and cutting inside Julien Jane
for a memorable try.

Keatley knocked over the conversion to hand Munster a 17-16 lead, but shoddy
defensive coverage of an innocuous kick by Murray deep inside Irish territory
saw a penalty go Racing’s way with five minutes to play.

Barkley made no mistake to hand the home side the lead once again, Bergamasco
stretching that further with a late penalty after a Munster ruck infringement.

Final Score Racing Metro 22 (1) Munster 17 (10)


Racing Metro 92
Tries: Machenaud
Penalties: Barkley 4, Bergamasco
Conversions: Barkley

Tries: Dougall, Zebo
Penalties: O’Gara
Conversions: O’Gara, Keatley


Racing Metro 92: Benjamin Fall; Julien Jane, Mirco Bergamasco, Fabrice Estebanez, Julien Saubade; Olly Barkley, Maxime Machenaud; Andrea Lo Cicero, Dimitri Szarzewski, Luc Ducalcon, Karim Ghezal, Francois Carl Van der Merwe, Antoine Battut, Jacques Cronje (capt), Sakiusa Matadigo.

Replacements: Thomas Bianchin, Eddy Ben Arous, Fabrice Metz, Bernard Le Roux, Camille Gerondeau, Sebastien Descons, Virimi Vakatawa, Benjamin Salemane Sa

Munster: Ian Keatley; Doug Howlett (capt), Casey Laulala, James Downey, Simon Zebo; Ronan O’Gara, Conor Murray; Dave Kilcoyne, Damien Varley, BJ Botha; Billy Holland, Paul O’Connell; Donncha Ryan, Sean Dougall, Peter O’Mahony.

Replacements: Mick Sherry, Marcus Horan, Stephen Archer, Dave O’Callaghan, Paddy Butler, Peter Stringer, Danny Barnes, Denis Hurley.

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