Despite crossing the line four times, the Ospreys Premiership Select side couldn't overcome the powerful Irish visitors at the Bridgend Ford Brewery Field
After last week's trip to Limerick, the Ospreys Premiershipselect side put in a much improved performance against Munster A at the Bridgend Ford Brewery Field this afternoon, scoring four tries in a ten try thriller of a game.
The game started well for the home side as they put early pressure on Munster, within two minutes a penalty was given away and Luke Price lined up for the first kick of the afternoon. Unfortunately his effort went wide but the Ospreys were quickly back on the attack.
Munster were penalised in the scrum and Price's place kick put the Ospreys PS right in the corner for the line out. The home side attempted to roll their way over the try line however were met with a solid Munster defence and struggled to make quick progress. Munster indiscipline cost them again and another perfect place kick from Price put the Ospreys PS right back into the danger zone. A team effort powered the pack over the try line and Ifereimi Boladau dropped down to score. Price adding the extras with a successful conversion.
While the visitors hadn't particularly bothered the Ospreys defensive efforts in the first ten minutes, it was a different story once they got into the 22. Munster took advantage of the Ospreys PS being penalised to put their own kick in the corner and were unstoppable as Shane Buckley raced to put the ball between the posts. Bill Johnston putting the scores even with his conversion.
Both sides had opportunities with the ball in hand in the following 10 minutes but with some huge defensive efforts and tackles from the opposition, both teams knocked on before they could get at the try line.
When the Ospreys PS were penalised in the scrum however the visitors were quick to take advantage. Their line out feet from the try line gave them the perfect platform to power forward before hooker Kevin O'Byrne put the ball down. Another successful conversion from Johnston extended their lead.
Just minutes later Munster A were back across the line for try number three. They had possession but not territory as the Ospreys Premiership Select had them pinned back in their own half until forward Sean Doyle made an incredible break and ran half the length of the pitch to score. Johnston added his third successful conversion with 32 minutes played.
Trailing by 14 points the Ospreys PS spent the rest of the half hunting down their second try. Lloyd Evans made a beautiful break, dodging defenders but couldn't make it all the way however soon after they were back on the attack up the wing. A team effort gained the home side ground before captain Richard Fussell received it on the 22 and raced in to score. Price converted with just two minutes of the first half remaining.
Unfortunately for the home side they didn't get to close out the scoring as Munster were awarded a penalty and Johnston extended their lead with the last play of the half.
HT: Ospreys Premiership Select 14 - 24 Munster
It wasn't such an ideal start for the Ospreys PS in the second half. Barely a minute had been played and they were being forced to defend a powerful attack when Lloyd Evans was shown a yellow for a technical infringement. Johnston putting the resulting penalty kick right between the posts.
The home side quickly recovered their earlier fire and Price placed another exceptional kick right into the corner. When Munster's resulting line out throw went long Matthew Dwyer was perfectly placed to catch it and fly over the try line. Price, with a rare miss, sent the conversion attempt wide.
The visitors were quick to respond and were soon back trying to break through an improved Ospreys PS defence. The home side forced them to go through many phases despite Munster being with touching distance of the try line before holding them up when they did eventually cross. Munster were much more clinical at the resulting 5m scrum and got the ball out quickly to score. Johnston, with his only miss of the match, failed to kick the conversion.
Chances followed for the Ospreys Premiership select side but handling errors as well as a solid wall of defence from the Irish team meant that they failed to capitalise on their efforts. Unlike the visitors, who as soon as they regained possession pushed the Ospreys backwards. Darren Sweetnam making a sudden break and scoring a fifth try for Munster before the home side could react. Johnston regaining his earlier form to convert.
From the restart a huge run from Joe Tomalin-Reeves to collect put the Ospreys PS back into a prime position. The home side used the wing to gain ground and when Munster were penalised for not rolling away they had another line out on the 5m line. The Premiership Select team started to build their play and go through the phases before a wide pass found Kristian Phillips on the wing. He dodged through two defenders to throw himself over the try line for the Ospreys 4th of the afternoon. Price's successful conversion adding the Ospreys PS final two points of the game.
Frustratingly for the home side, the last try of the game came from what was originally an Ospreys PS attack. Price, who's place kicks could not be faulted all game, put the Ospreys PS into the Munster half before replacement Gareth Thomas charged up the wing. However a huge tackle meant the home side lost the ball and when Sweetnam picked it up for Munster and ran, the Ospreys just couldn't get back in time to cover their try line and he crossed for his second. Johnston with a successful conversion to bring the scoring to a close.
FT: Ospreys Premiership Select 26 - 46 Munster A