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WHILE MUNSTER MANAGED to salvage a draw and very nearly stole a win at the death, there were moments last night that must have filled Johann van Graan with dread.
Racing 92, inspired by the mercurial Finn Russell, tore Munster apart in flashes of brilliance for three tries at Thomond Park and very nearly manufactured a few more, but the southern province clung on like few other teams do.
Munster came up short in their bid for a home win.
Source: Ryan Byrne/INPHO
Peter O’Mahony admitted afterwards that a 21-21 draw had “probably flattered” Munster and there was surely some relief for van Graan as his side shared the spoils to ensure they’re now level on points with Pool 4 leaders Racing after the two opening rounds, trailing only by a single point on points difference.
Next up in Europe, back-to-back ties with Saracens – first in Thomond Park and then in Allianz Park – will be very testing, but van Graan was happy for Munster to have taken something from last night’s thrilling contest in Thomond Park.
“It was a very tough game of rugby,” said van Graan. “Two heavyweight boxers went at each other literally until the last second of the game.
“I thought we played some really good rugby in the first half, it was a big breakdown battle. We fell behind in the second half, came back. I thought our bench made a big impact.”
Van Graan was pleased with Andrew Conway’s late try and JJ Hanrahan’s sideline conversion before an “incredible kick” from K
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