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Racing Metro 92 upset former Champions Munster


Racing winger Mirco Bergamasco jumps for the ball with Munster scrum-half Conor Murray

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Article Published: Saturday 13 October 2012


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 Racing-Metro.

"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 rain.

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)

Scorers

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

Munster
Tries: Dougall, Zebo
Penalties: O'Gara
Conversions: O'Gara, Keatley

Teams

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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