Glasgow Warriors v Munster
Glasgow Warriors gave the Scotstoun faithful the perfect gift for Christmas with a win against Munster which ensured Townsend’s men moved top of GUINNESS PRO12, ahead of Ulster's trip to Ospreys.The match was an extremely close affair but the Warriors showed unbelievable resistance and mental resolve to come back from being 18-9 down at half-time.
Glasgow ensured the visitors scored no points in the second period and were relentless in attack, getting their rewards in the last 10 minutes when Jonny Gray dived over the line.
November's player of the month Peter Murchie started at full-back and the club's record try scorer DTH van der Merwe also returned to the fray.
In the forwards Tyrone Holmes started as well as Leone Nakarawa and Fraser Brown.
Munster coach, Anthony Foley made eight changes after his side's 26-19 defeat by Clermont.
The home side took an early lead through a Finn Russell kick but before the 10-minute mark, Munster hit back through talismanic fly-half JJ Hanrahan who finished off his side’s first attack of the match with a try. His kick skewed wide however.
Shortly after, Russell saw a penalty go short of the target but after 18 minutes, he made no mistake from the touchline, booting the ball between the sticks, giving the Warriors a 6-5 lead.
Two minutes later, Munster were reduced to 14-men after Paul O’Connell was sin-binned for infringing at a ruck.
Being down a man didn’t affect Munster immediately though as they soon took the lead after a scrum collapsed and JJ Hanarahan rattled the ball between the sticks.
Two minutes later the Warriors were back in front through Finn Russell, with the score 9-8 in the hosts favour.
As the half drew to a close, to end an even 40 minutes, Munster edged in front through Hanrahan, with the half-time score 11-9 to the away side.After 40 minutes had been played, within overtime, Munster scored a converted try with Robin Copeland dotting down and Hanrahan converting giving Anthony Foley’s side an 18-9 lead.
The second half started slowly but it was the Warriors who had the majority of possession and with 52 minutes gone, they got their just rewards when Leone Nakarawa stretched out and touched the ball down.
Finn Russell then converted the try to go within two points of Munster’s total.
The afternoon was proving frustrating for Townsend’s men and moments later Munster had a penalty but Hanrahan sliced it wide.
As is always the case in matches between the two sides, it was an utterly thunderous match, with neither team giving an inch and the closing stages to the game nail biting.
With the score 18-16 to Munster after 56 minutes the Warriors slowly turned up the heat with DTH van der Merwe producing a searing break which put the visitors under pressure.
From the resultant play, Jonny Gray charged over to touch down and put the Warriors in front, with Scotstoun bursting into euphoria.
Finn Russell missed the conversion but Glasgow were brimming with confidence in the closing stages and ground out the win